This from Code Photography:
Here are some photos of the vehicle vs building in Chicago on Wednesday (1/21/15).A couple more photos can be found here: Car into Building (1/21/15) – codephotography
Excerpts from the Daily Herald about another fire district seeking a tax increase.
Receiving fire protection and ambulance care will get more expensive in the Fox River and Countryside Fire/Rescue district service area if residents approve a tax increase on the April ballot.
District President Jim Gaffney confirmed Tuesday evening that trustees … approved a resolution to put a tax increase question before voters. Gaffney said district staff members are still crunching the numbers the tax increase would generate, but the money will fund salaries for emergency workers and a new fire engine. Gaffney said the first year of the proposed tax increase would add about $45 to the property tax bill of the owner of a $100,000 home. But that’s just in the first year. “… we’re going to do it on a step increase over five years. It will start at $45, and each year it will go up. We felt that was a fair way to do it.”
The first three years of the tax increase would fund salary increases and personnel costs for district staff. The fourth an fifth year of the increase would see the district sock away money to pay for equipment upgrades, including a new fire engine.
Gaffney said the retirement of some of the district’s bond debt in 2018 will offset a portion of the proposed tax increase, but he wasn’t ready to discuss exactly how much.
This district has a 38-mile coverage area. It spans parts of St. Charles, Campton and Wayne townships as well as parts of Kane and DuPage Counties. Sections of the villages of Wayne and Campton Hills fall within the district’s boundaries.
Excerpts from an ACB7Chicago.com article about the Village of Matteson:
Some full-time police and firefighters in Matteson could be let go because of budget problems in the south suburb. The Village of Matteson sent letters to the police and fire unions this week, according to the village administrator. He says the village is facing budget constraints and hopes to open up negotiations with the police and fire unions.
The police union reports that 13 police officers and 8 firefighters could be cut by mid-February.
“I don’t want to say it’s a chopping block because we look at the life of these firefighters, police officers, their families, it’s very critical to them for their jobs. It’s also critical for our residents to know that safety is there when they call, that when they call 911, that they know someone is going to be responding,” said Brian Mitchell, Matteson village administrator.
The police union had this response, in part: “The union is disheartened regarding this drastic step as it directly impacts the safety of the residents, members of the business community and officers on the street.” The village administrator says those unions do have a chance to respond to the letter by Tuesday.
Residents can speak out at a board meeting scheduled for 7:30 p.m. Monday.
Excerpts from the SouthtownStar.com from Friday:
An $8 million budget deficit in Matteson has led village officials to impose layoffs of police and firefighters, village administrator Brian Mitchell said Friday. The village intends to eliminate eight firefighters/paramedic positions to save $1.5 million and remove 13 police officers to save $1.2 million. Mitchell said the proposed layoffs were mindful of the need for safety in the community, stressing that the “goal is to make sure the community is still safe and secure.”
The layoffs would cut about half of the town’s 28-person police patrol, said Ray Violetto, the Metropolitan Alliance of Police representative for the Matteson officers. Violetto said he understands that the village has a deficit but it doesn’t make sense that firefighters and police officers are the only ones losing their jobs. “I’ve only seen cuts in emergency response personnel, but I don’t know of cuts in public works, administration or other departments,” he said.
The fire department would lose a quarter of its 32 union members, according to Scott Gilliam, president of the Associated Firefighters of Matteson. Gilliam insisted that Matteson “cannot possibly operate” with eight fewer firefighters, which would create a “severe threat to the safety and lives of both the firefighters and the citizens of this community.” “There’s no way we can operate below what we’re doing now,” he said, noting that the firefighters’ contract with the village requires a minimum of eight firefighters to be on duty per day. Forcing the remaining firefighters to maintain that daily minimum would require them to work “a lot of overtime” past their 60-hour work week, putting everyone’s health and safety at risk, Gilliam said.
The village administration sent letters to the police and fire unions, informing them of and asking for a response by Tuesday, Mitchell said, citing collective bargaining agreements that give the unions the “ability for critical input.”
Mitchell said several residents have called the village hall, asking to discuss the layoff issue at the meeting. He said the layoffs are not on the agenda because the village administration first wants to get the unions’ official response to the plan, but residents can comment and ask questions as usual.
From the Chicago Trbune:
The body of an 88-year-old woman was found inside her burning home near northwest suburban Barrington early Saturday, officials said.
At 1:15 a.m. [firefighters and police] were called to the 21000 block of North 21st Street in an unincorporated area near Barrington for a structure fire.
The home was fully engulfed in flames and … the body of the 88-year-old homeowner [was found] in an upstairs bedroom, according to the sheriff’s office.
Excerpts from the Chicago Tribune about the new fire chief for the Northbrook Fire Department
Jose M. Torres, 52, … from the Santa Monica (Calif.) Fire Department … a 34-year firefighting veteran. His first day with [the] Northbrook Fire Department is Feb. 16… as chief of the Northbrook Fire Department.
Torres’ appointment was announced by the village last week after a nationwide search that drew 50 candidates. Torres’ fire service career began in Illinois with the United States Air Force, where he served as a firefighter and assistant chief for training. He spent the past 18 years with the Santa Monica Fire Department as a firefighter, paramedic, fire captain, battalion chief, and most recently a training division chief.
Torres said there are many similarities between the Northbrook and Santa Monica fire departments in size, scope and history, with both being more than 100 years old. Although he was hesitant to comment on any initiatives before starting his new role, Torres said he is confident in taking over for 30-year veteran Mark Nolan, who retired as chief of the department last November.
Torres said that it’s tough coming in from the outside, but he’s confident he can apply the lessons he learned over the last 34 years to his new job in Northbrook.
Northbrook village officials declined to comment for this story, but confirmed Torres’ annual salary will be $145,000.
This from Code Photography:
Here are some photos and a video from the 2nd alarm fire in Harvey. I believe 5 people were transported and one dog was rescued.More photos can be found at: 2nd Alarm House Fire (1/22/15) – codephotography
Harvey firefighters went to a 2nd Alarm for a house fire at 192 E. 157th Street yesterday afternoon (1/22/15). Images from Josh Boyajian and Tim Olk.
From Josh Boyajian:
Yesterday we took in Harvey’s Fire @ 192 e. 157th st. We were coming from Merrionette Park so it took us a little bit. When we got there, Harvey was on the first floor working but still had heavy fire showing from the 2nd. Crews had a hard time getting a knock on the fire due to the construction of the house, but kept it from spreading to the adjacent house to the east. Here are some of my pictures.Full Gallery is on my site.-Josh
Tim Olk was at O’Hare Airport last night when CFD Lt. John M Leonard arrived back in Chicago.