Archive for September 5th, 2016

Springfield Fire Department news

Excerpts from the

A Sangamon County judge has declined to decide whether the Springfield Fire Pension Board can include holiday pay in its pension calculations for current firefighters. Instead, Circuit Judge John Schmidt dismissed the board’s case against the city and the state Department of Insurance.

The pension board sought the court’s advice on whether to include the additional money firefighters receive for working on a holiday in pension calculations. The Department of Insurance, the state’s regulatory agency for pension boards, issued an advisory opinion in November that the pay should not figure into pensions, reversing an earlier opinion.

The board voted to exclude holiday pay for new hires, but not for firefighters currently on the job, as the city wants. Don Craven, the board’s attorney, has said some board members fear a lawsuit from current firefighters if holiday pay is excluded because of the state constitutional clause that pensions cannot be diminished. Still, the judge did not agree that fear of a lawsuit was sufficient for him to make a decision either way.

“The Board’s failure to act and adopt a position concerning how to calculate double-time holiday pay deprives it of standing to bring suit for a declaratory judgment,” Schmidt wrote in the opinion, which was made available on Thursday.

“We’re pleased with the decision,” said Mayor Jim Langfelder. “(Judge Schmidt) provided direction to the board, and hopefully they take that and make a decision best for the fund.”

The best decision, Langfelder said, is for the board to follow the Department of Insurance’s advice.

Including holiday pay in pension payments is costly for the city. According to city estimates, three recent retirees would collect $385,000 in payments overall due to the inclusion. Given ballooning pension costs, the cost of including holidays is concerning for the city.

Still, Craven said Thursday that the board is likely to continue including holiday pay in pension packages it’s asked to approve. Eventually, he said, a judge will have to resolve the issue.

The board has 30 days to appeal.

Tags: , ,

New ambulance for Evanston

This from Niko Stefani:

Here is the new Ambulance 21. I have included a picture of the old one.

Evanston FD Ambulance 21

Evanston FD Ambulance 21. Niko Stefani photo

Evanston FD Ambulance 21

Evanston FD Ambulance 21. Niko Stefani photo

Evanston FD Ambulance 21

Evanston Ambulance 21 – 2016 Ford F550/Horton Type I. Josh Boyajian photo

Tags: , , , , ,

New engine for Sublette FD

This from Bill Fricker:

Here’s a couple photos of the new engine at Sublette, IL in Lee County. It’s a 2016 Spartan Metro Star / Toyne  ( TID 11653 )   1,500-gpm / 1,000-gbt / 30-gal foam. Vin: 4S7CU2D91GC80907   Enjoy the photos.  Bill Fricker Photos.
Sublette FD Engine 11

Sublette FD – Engine 1 2016 Spartan Metro Star / Toyne ( TID 11653 ) 1,500-gpm / 1,000-gbt / 30-gal foam. Vin: 4S7CU2D91GC80907 Bill Fricker photo

Spartan Metro Star Toyne fire engine

Bill Fricker photo

Tags: , , , , ,

Chicago Heights Fire Department news

Chicago Heights Local 711 Firefighter Paramedics battle against layoffs and privatization of EMS

More can be found HERE

Tags: , , , , ,