Posts Tagged Harvard Fire Protection District

Harvard Fire Protection District news

Excerpts from the nwherald.com:

After the departure of the Harvard Fire Protection District administrative assistant, the board of trustees is considering a partnership with a public accounting firm to perform administrative and financial services.

They received a presentation from Lauterbach and Amen LLP – which provides administrative services for the Algonquin-Lake in the Hills Fire Protection District, the Cary Police Pension Fund board, and Crystal Lake Fire Department. Before the board moved forward with hiring an administrative assistant, they wanted to explore the firm’s services to see if it could improve some of the weaknesses in the district’s system. For $700 a month, the firm would prepare board meeting agendas and packets for trustees, transcribe meeting minutes, maintain the district’s digital records while making arrangements for the potential destruction of paper copies of files plus maintaining the district’s website. For an extra $100 a month, a representative would be in attendance for board meetings. The firm also could provide financial services to the fire district, such as budget assistance, audit preparation and tax levy documentation.

Fees for financial services generally are between $1,000 and $1,500 a month but the firm would have to determine how many bills the fire protection district pays a month and what software is used before it can come up with an exact number.

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Harvard Fire Protection District news

Excerpts from the NWherald.com:

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Harvard Fire Protection District news

Excerpts from the NWHerald.com:

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Harvard Fire Protection District news

Excerpts from the NWHerald.com:

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Harvard Fire Protection District news

Excerpts from the Northwestherald.com:

Harvard Fire Protection District board Secretary Joe Clarke announced during Tuesday’s meeting that he will be stepping down from his secretarial role, but he said he will continue to serve the district through his current term. The board voted, 3-0, to accept Clarke’s resignation, effective immediately. 

An action item calling for Clarke to step down as secretary and be replaced by trustee Josh Kelnhofer appeared on the board’s agenda Sunday, but board President Tom Condon said that the item had been removed. 

Condon also announced Tuesday that he would not be seeking reappointment as the board’s president. He said that after serving 18 years as president, it was time for some new blood, change, and new ideas to come forward.

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Harvard Fire Protection District news

Excepts from the nwherald.com:

With one engine not operational and one that recently sustained damage during a house fire, the Harvard Fire Protection District’s board decided Tuesday to secure a bank loan to fund a new pumper. Two bids were opened during a special meeting earlier in the day, but only one met specific requirements that the district is looking for.

At this point in the fiscal year, the district has spent in excess of its projected income by $35,000 and an additional $132,000 needs to be paid in payroll expenses before property tax dollars come in June, which quickly will exhaust reserve funding if this trend continues.

Of $37,654 in damage Engine 747 sustained after responding to a fire on Altenburg Road in November,  insurance will cover all but a $1,000 deductible. The engine should be fully operational within the next two weeks.

While the engine has been under repair, Harvard has used engines from the Marengo Fire Protection District and the Lincolnwood Fire Department. As a form of repayment, staff are exploring the possibility of using the windshield from the decommissioned Engine 747 to replace a cracked windshield on Marengo’s engine.

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Harvard Fire Protection District news

Excerpts from the nwherald.com:

The Harvard Fire Protection District and the McHenry County Sheriff’s Office responded to a 911 call around 1:05 a.m. Wednesday in the 4400 block of Pagles Road. The report came in as a snowmobile crash with an unresponsive victim. It was snowing heavily at the time of the incident.

The victim, identified as 32-year-old Brandon Shields of Harvard, was killed in the crash. An autopsy is scheduled for Thursday to determine the cause of death. He was wearing a helmet.

A second snowmobiler at the scene took a group of paramedics to the crash site, which was several hundred feet off the roadway. The victim’s snowmobile had struck a tree.

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Harvard Fire Protection District news (more)

Excerpts from the NorthwestHerald.com:

A request for police presence at Harvard Fire Protection District board meetings after a trustee’s concerns that a meeting attendee posed a threat was turned down, Harvard Police Chief Mark Krause said.

In November, Harvard Fire Chief Steve Harter and Deputy Chief Don Davidson were suspended for 36 hours based on a letter they sent to board President Thomas Condon in June calling the conduct of Trustee Joe Clarke unprofessional and hostile.

During December’s board meeting, former Harvard Firefighter Don Carlson said he was extremely disappointed in the board, particularly Clarke, whose bullying is destroying the reputation and confidence in the fire protection district chiefs and staff.

Several fire chiefs, including Marengo Chief Bob Bradbury and Woodstock Chief Michael Hill, also spoke during the meeting in defense of Harter’s and Davidson’s character and service.

In a memo dated Jan. 2 to McHenry County Board Chairman Jack Franks, Krause and attorney David McArdle, Clarke wrote that Carlson has distorted the facts, forced his son to resign from the district and has reviewed personnel files from his 31 years of service with the village of Arlington Heights.

“Mr. Carlson’s actions have gone far beyond what a rational citizen would do in questioning a public official,” Clarke wrote in the memo.

In conclusion, Clarke said in the letter that he believes Carlson carries a concealed firearm during meetings and that he poses a threat of “going postal.” Therefore, he recommended board president Thomas Condon formally request the assistance of the Harvard Police Department in maintaining order and security at meetings.

“A uniformed police officer is better suited to silence and remove Mr. Carlson from the meeting room should he have another outburst of behavior,” Clarke wrote.

Krause said he and Condon reviewed the memo and agreed the fire protection district is not interested in having a law enforcement presence at meetings.

Carlson said in an email to the Northwest Herald that he was surprised and appalled to be accused of being a threat, and his attendance at meetings was to express his feelings about a trustee he feels is a bully.

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4-Alarm fire in Marengo, 12-16-18

Photos from Tim Olk of a 4-Alarm fire at 813 Menge Road in Marengo Sunday 12/16/18.

fire trucks at fire scene

Tim Olk photo

Marengo FD fire engine

Tim Olk photo

large house destroyed by fire

Tim Olk photo

large house destroyed by fire

Tim Olk photo

large house destroyed by fire

Tim Olk photo

large house destroyed by fire

Tim Olk photo

flames from house attic

Tim Olk photo

large house destroyed by fire

Tim Olk photo

large house destroyed by fire

Tim Olk photo

large house destroyed by fire

Tim Olk photo

large house destroyed by fire

Tim Olk photo

large house destroyed by fire

Tim Olk photo

large house destroyed by fire

Tim Olk photo

Firefighters battle house fire

Tim Olk photo

Marengo FD fire engine

Tim Olk photo

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Harvard FPD news

Excerpts from the NWHerald.com:

As the dust settled on months of infighting throughout the Harvard Fire Protection District, Harvard Fire Chief Steve Harter and Deputy Fire Chief Don Davidson were slapped with suspensions. The punishment stemmed from a letter sent in June that called the recent conduct of trustee and board secretary Joe Clarke unprofessional and hostile.

After talking in closed session at the Harvard Fire Protection District Board’s regularly scheduled November meeting, trustees voted without opposition to suspend Harter and Davidson for 36 hours, with the suspensions to be served in December at times approved by the board. 

In a letter sent June 19 to the board president, Harter and Davidson said it has become apparent that Clarke has waged a vendetta against the chief and other officers at the part-time fire district. “The actions within the last few months have been very unprofessional and have no place in an open meeting,” the letter read. “The belligerent, threatening and overbearing treatment has been escalating to hostile levels of attack.”


On July 21, Clarke said in an email to the other trustees that the letter demonstrated a significant level of insubordination. He also called into question a number of insufficiencies within the district. “Being queried on failure to conduct preventative maintenance on apparatus, missing fire incident reports, improperly handling an investigation into a vehicle accident involving EMS apparatus and the subsequent employee discipline, missing security box keys, secretive promotional process, insufficient response to request for job descriptions and policy changes, etc.,” Clarke wrote. 


In response, Clarke said the chiefs should be held accountable and disciplined accordingly, and he would support any decision reached by the other four trustees.


At the board’s June 12 meeting, Clarke called into question Harter’s credentials, such as whether he was a certified fire officer and what education in fire service management or fire science technology he has.

When pressed by the board, Clarke questioned the promotion process, which he would later call unethical during the board’s next meeting.

In August, the board hired a Naperville-based law firm that represents more fire protection districts than any other firm in the state – to conduct an investigation into employee misconduct, which Clarke said was because of the chief’s letter.


Between Aug. 14 and Nov. 28, the district paid the firm $3,240 for its services.
A FOIA request for documentation showing any findings or rulings from the investigation was denied on the grounds that the correspondence was intended for the purpose of assisting the board on how to discipline district employees.

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