It wasn’t until I got home and my husband asked me why I would vote no that it really hit me that my vote may have been misunderstood. He of all people knows that I support public safety and believe that it is a priority.The motion was to stay out of the Water Department’s business and not provide any monetary help from the city. It was a 4-1 vote. The lone no vote was mine.
I voted no because I understood from Fire Chief’s presentation that if additional funding wasn’t found as of July 1, 2013, Lear station will close and 3 firemen will be laid off. The Chief’s plan only works for keeping the one station opening and letting firemen go.In hindsight, I just don’t think there was enough discussion.
I suggested several times in our “discussion” that I believed the city should loan the department what they would need to get through this year wthout laying off firemen and closing Lear station. None of the other councilmembers agreed with me for their own reasons.
I think at least one of my fellow members believed we were saving the fire department from going to the county, because it was listed as an option and the City Manager continuds to state that is his opinion. That was not what the motion was. The idea of the motion was to stay out of the Water/Fire business amd leave them to sink or swim.
If I were a more experienced council member, I would have asked for a motion that repressented the true question; Are we as a city going to provide help to the Fire Department that will allow them to keep both stations open and keep our current level of staffing? In that motion my vote would have been yes.
I don’t agree with tonight’s decision, but it was the decision made. I respect my fellow council members right to their opinions and will put this behind me.
I encourage the citizens to step up and help each other.