Another Castlegar councillor comments on fire department letter

Councillor Sue Heaton-Sherstobitoff adds her thoughts on recent letter to the editor.

City of Castlegar councillor Sue Heaton-Sherstobitoff.

I would like to respond with regard to the hiring of a 2nd deputy fire chief and the Fire Chief as the airport manager.

It certainly has ignited a lot of dialogue in our community – which is great.

Almost a year ago council debated the merits of hiring a 2nd deputy fire chief during our budget meetings. There were two main reasons why we decided to add the position:

1) For succession planning which is vital to any community or in fact any business – we cannot afford for the knowledge and the ‘know-how’ to leave our community without some kind of mental download – and I don’t think we have any Star Trek types lingering around! When Fire Chief Rempel retires in a few years – over 30 years of knowledge will be gone – so we need that transfer of information to happen!

2) And, to alleviate the workload/commitment that our current Fire Chief and Deputy Fire Chief do on a daily, weekly and monthly basis – no one should be expected to be on call 24/7. I feel safe and secure knowing that these two individuals have gone above and beyond week after week and have been there for our community – saving property or saving lives. When we look around the region at other fire departments with numerous paid staff (some have 10)  – which costs those taxpayers millions in dollars – we should be thankful for what we have and how the department is run at a third of the costs of others.

And with regard to the comment about the Fire Chief being demoted when he took on the Airport Manager job – that is so far from the truth. When is it ever a demotion when someone takes on added ‘responsibility’ in lieu of already having a full-time job.

To me – it means council trusts Mr. Rempel to get the job done! Council will be starting the budget process very soon and I invite everyone to take part in the process – send us your ideas, thoughts, comments – come out to budget meetings, talk to us – send us email – we really want to hear from our community. As an elected official – I can honestly say I don’t have all the ideas or answers.

It really does take a community to ‘raise the community!’ and if we all work together we really can be the best community we can be – and to me that is something to be very thankful for.

Sue Heaton–Sherstobitoff

Councillor, City of Castlegar

 

 

Just Posted

Forestry workers set to begin job action in Kootenays

Operations in Castlegar, Cranbrook, Galloway, Elko, Radium, Golden may see job action this week.

Castlegar pastors find life in wheelchair a challenge

The men found the obstacles were both physical and mental.

Columbia Avenue paving scheduled for weekend

Paving on Castlegar’s main thoroughfare will take place in a few days, weather permitting.

Tour company plans shuttle service to Kelowna for stranded travellers

SMT Kootenay wants to help travellers get in and out of ‘Cancelgar’ in winter months

Castlegar library offering free radon detectors

Radon is the second-leading cause of lung cancer and Castlegar has one of the highest levels in B.C.

Josie Hotel will be ready on opening day, says management

West Kootenay’s first ski-in, ski-out boutique hotel to open this month

Price makes 36 saves as Habs edge Canucks 3-2

Late goal lifts Montreal past Vancouver

BC Minister of Agriculture loses stepson to accidental overdose

Lana Popham announces death of her 23-year-old stepson, Dan Sealey

Canadian military’s template for perfect recruits outdated: Vance

Gen. Jonathan Vance, the chief of defence staff says that the military has to change because the very nature of warfare is changing, particularly when it comes to cyber-warfare

‘Toxic’ chosen as the Word of the Year by Oxford Dictionaries

Other top contenders for 2018 include ‘gaslighting’ and ‘techlash’

RCMP bust illegal B.C. cannabis lab

Marijuana may be legal but altering it using chemicals violates the Cannabis Act

Canada defeats Germany 29-10 in repechage, moves step closer to Rugby World Cup

Hong Kong needs a bonus-point win over Canada — scoring four or more tries — while denying the Canadians a bonus point

Avalanche Canada in desperate need of funding

The organization provides avalanche forecasting for an area larger than the United Kingdom

5 B.C. cities break temperature records

Parts of B.C. remain warm, at 10 C, while others feeling chilly

Most Read