Firefighters present budget to boost revenue, retain firefighters

Crestview Fire Department truck
FILE PHOTO | News Bulletin
Published: Wednesday, August 21, 2013 at 01:56 PM.

CRESTVIEW — While the Crestview City Council and department heads struggle with resolving a $533,167 deficit between proposed spending and forecast revenues, city firefighters are engaged in some budget brainstorming of their own.

From increasing fees for fire inspections to restructuring the department's leadership, the Crestview Professional Firefighters Association's proposal could save the city hundreds of thousands of dollars.

Ideas presented by Capt. Jim Poirrier, the union's president, include charging for fire inspections, which currently are free.

An inspection fee schedule based on neighboring departments' fees could generate as much as $35,000 per year, Poirrier said during Monday’s city council meeting. By law, the department must inspect city businesses every other year.

Fees would also increase for generating fire reports, performing fire stand-bys and displays, and for responding to nuisance fire alarms activated by poorly calibrated or maintained systems.

Cost savings

The firefighters suggested creating each station's own coffee fund, eliminating $2,300 a year, and saving fuel by eliminating non-essential driving, such as runs to a store.

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