Sunday, January 10, 2010

.The New State of Normal

A third of the way through the new month and hopefully, things will be settling into a new normal. The course of some events cannot be changed, the results of which alter our lives forever. What was normal will never be again, all we can hope for is that the "new normal" will be acceptable.

Our carefully crafted personnel moves at the winter draft meeting have been modified, economic forces bigger than us have come into play and have caused the delay. Promotions and the filling of vacancies were postponed to an unnamed later date.

There are several members of the K.B.F.P.D. who were waiting for a call from the chief, telling them that they were to be promoted. Those people will just have wait a while longer. Hopefully, they will be promoted before the list expires or the district will extend the list. Time will tell. Current captains and engineers aren't minding this situation too much, as overtime is being used to fill these vacant positions.

We currently have several firefighter vacancies as well. These positions are being filled with overtimers, even though there are candidates on the eligibility list who have completed physicals and background investigations.

In my mind, the only plausible reason for  carrying these vacancies is that they are contemplating staffing reductions within the operations division. Staffing cuts have been made in every division except ops, maybe it's our turn.

If so, it will be an interesting issue as we have a minimum staffing agreement with the district. It is a component of our MOU that we value highly. The battle over this could be interesting.

It also could be a ploy for us to consider further wage and benefit concessions. They may be forcing our hand to see how much we do actually value the minimum staffing agreement. Take a pay cut or lose people, it's up to us. Time will tell on this.

I have my own opinion, I personally would rather take a small hit in my wallet rather than lose positions. That is my opinion only, others in the district and the Firefighters Association may have different positions.

Things still worked out pretty good for us, the two members of my crew who wanted different assignments got what they wanted, more or less. Although the incoming members are different than we first thought, they will still be a good fit down here at the healing place.

All said and done, one of our first goals is to get our routine down and settle into the new normal. That and pray for a good 2010. Hopefully 2010 will end up better than 2009 did, that one really sucked.

As always, thanks for reading. Hope your 2010 is a good one.


  1. Dear Captain Schmoe,
    As far as i can see, your thinking is spot on--know what you want for strategic purposes, and adjust to what is.

    I wish you a new and improved year,

    Very truly yours,
    Ann T.

  2. I feel your pain, we're going through the same thing here. 2 years ago we thought we would be adding positions, now we're 8 down with the threat of 10-20 layoffs in a dept that started this with 90.

  3. Hey Capt, I hope your year is everything you want it to be and more. You deserve it and I truly believe that. Stay safe.

  4. Never been here before so thanks for coming to my site. Joe retired after 36 years as Assistant Chief and I resigned after 10 years, with the same Fire Department. There's NOTHING that equals the brotherhood.