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Fired Massachusetts Medic Off Payroll

BOURNE — A Bourne firefighter-paramedic who appealed his firing in May 2009 is officially off the town payroll.

On Friday, the state's Civil Service Commission dismissed Jonathan Bean's termination appeal, ending an 18-month wait during which the town was paying Bean, 30, although he was not working.

"The commission determined that the town met its burden of proving that it was justified in terminating Bean's employment," Bourne Town Counsel Robert Troy wrote in a memorandum Friday after the state decision was made.

On Monday, the Times reported that the Civil Service Commission had taken nearly 18 months to make a decision regarding Bean's termination appeal, during which Bean was paid more than $75,000 in salary.

Last week Troy said that it would be at least two more weeks until a ruling on the firing.

Reached Friday evening, Bean said he was disappointed with the dismissal and disagreed with the ruling.

"I thought I'd done everything I possibly could" during his tenure with the department, he said.

Town officials, on the other hand, are satisfied with the outcome but not surprised, Bourne Town Administrator Thomas Guerino said.

"We were absolutely sure that the position the town had taken ... was right," Guerino said. "We wouldn't have taken the action if we weren't sure we could prevail."

In his dismissal of Bean's appeal, Civil Service Commissioner Paul Stein wrote that he upheld Bean's termination because the revocation of his paramedic's license was justified.

"Without such an authorization to practice, the appellant was prohibited from providing ... patient care, which was an essential condition of his job duties," Stein wrote.

Bean was hired as a firefighter-paramedic in Bourne in January 2007 and was fired in May 2009 after other department employees complained about his abilities as a paramedic.

Based on those complaints, the Cape and Islands Emergency Medical Services System revoked Bean's "authorization to practice" as a paramedic, which is required by the Town of Bourne to work as a firefighter. The town then fired him.

Bean's official termination means the town must decide what will be done regarding the vacant position.

The town's practice in the past has been to immediately advertise the job, Guerino said. But with Bourne's current budget worries — Guerino has predicted a $1.9 million shortfall and layoffs in fiscal year 2012 — he is holding off on advertising, he said.

"I'm going to discuss with Chief (Martin) Greene what the best approach may be," Guerino said. "We're going to probably have some reductions in the public safety side (of the budget), so we're going to have to determine where best to use that money."

Bean said he doesn't know his next step.

"This was a job I loved," he said. "But it's time to move on and have a new goal."

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