Mequon Fire Department Reorganization Moves Forward - @

Mequon Fire Department Reorganization Moves Forward


Tom Kertscher | | Wednesday, September 26, 2007

MEQUON -- A reorganization of the Fire Department, which the chief says is top-heavy with supervisors and wasteful in spending, is set to go forward Monday after an informal blessing this week by city leaders.

Fire Chief David Bialk last week unveiled what he described as the first reorganization of the department in 38 years. Bialk, who was hired from Hales Corners about a year ago, said the 50-member department has one supervisor for every 1.8 firefighters and spends several times as much as other communities in responding to emergency calls because any of the paid-on call firefighters can respond to any emergency call.

On Tuesday, Bialk presented his plan to a meeting of the Common Council's Public Safety Committee, where firefighters upset with the plan got a chance to air their protests.

Given that Bialk believes he can make most of the changes under his own authority, the committee took no action, but city leaders expressed support for the plan, Ald. Dan Gannon said Wednesday.

"To me it sounds like just a focus on upgrading the group as a whole in terms of their training and capability and in terms of getting the job done," said Gannon, a member of the committee.

Figures provided by Bialk, some of which are disputed by firefighters, say an average of 16 Mequon firefighters and emergency medical technicians respond to each emergency call, whereas most non-full-time departments in the area average three.

To save money, a schedule for responding to emergencies will be implemented, Bialk said.

Although all firefighters and supervisors are paid the same hourly rate for responding to calls, Bialk plans to reduce the supervisor ratio to 1 for every 4 firefighters so that communication will be streamlined.

Jim Wienser, president of the Mequon Fire Department Organization, said he has asked the city to enter into bargaining to address at least some of the changes.

Connect: Have a thought or feedback about this? Add your comment now
Related Topics: Leadership and Professionalism, Industry News, Operations and Protcols

What's Your Take? Comment Now ...

Buyer's Guide Featured Companies

Featured Careers & Jobs in EMS

Get JEMS in Your Inbox


Fire EMS Blogs

Blogger Browser

Today's Featured Posts


EMS Airway Clinic

Improving Survival from Cardiac Arrest Using ACD-CPR + ITD

Using active compression-decompression CPR with an ITD has been shown to improve 1-year survival from cardiac arrest by 33%.
More >

Multimedia Thumb

FDNY Rescues Boy on Frozen River

Video captures rescue on the Bronx River.
Watch It >

Multimedia Thumb

Three Injured in Philadelphia Collapse

Parapet wall falls through roof of store.
Watch It >

Multimedia Thumb

Explosion Shakes Mexico Hospital

Rescuers search ruins of children’s hospital.
More >

Multimedia Thumb

Hands On February 2015

Here’s a look at this month’s product hands on.
More >

Multimedia Thumb

Nightwatch Series Premiere Party

JEMS Editor-in-Chief A.J. Heightman attends the series premiere of A&E's new reality show, "Nightwatch."
More >

Multimedia Thumb

VividTrac offered by Vivid Medical - EMS Today 2013

VividTrac, affordable high performance video intubation device.
Watch It >

Multimedia Thumb

Field Bridge Xpress ePCR on iPad, Android, Kindle Fire

Sneak peek of customizable run forms & more.
Watch It >

Multimedia Thumb

LMA MAD Nasal™

Needle-free intranasal drug delivery.
Watch It >

More Product Videos >