Stanislaus Consolidated Fire Protection District (SCFPD) had a regular board meeting virtually on Thursday, Aug. 13 at 6 p.m. There were several topics on the agenda including employee recognition, Station 23 closure, contract for services with Modesto Fire, and CalPERS employee contribution increase. Board of Directors President Greg Bernardi, Vice President Jonathan Goulding, Riverbank Director Chad Homme, Waterford Director Brandon Rivers, Director Steven Stanfield and Fire Chief Michael Whorton were all in attendance.
The minutes from the Aug. 13 meeting were not available to The News at presstime and will not be available until the September agenda is posted, said officials. The administration office is closed to the public but appointments can be made.
In past meetings the board has recognized staff and the years of service and they began the meeting acknowledging Engineer Knee for seven years of service, Finance-Administrator Manager Mr. Speed for one year, and Admin Asst. III Ms. Tamrrzian for one year. Congratulations were given to Captain Dave Wason who has retired after 30 years of service. They noted that Clint Bray was promoted to Battalion Chief and Andrew McDonald was promoted to Captain.
Station 23 remains closed due to the budget cuts from Fiscal Year 2019-2020. The station closed in October 2019 and is at 7737 Yosemite Blvd. in rural East Modesto. The SAFER Grant (Staffing for Adequate Fire and Emergency Response Grants) has been applied for but they have not received a response yet. The grant was created to provide funding directly to fire departments and volunteer firefighter interest organizations to increase or maintain the number of trained, ‘front line’ firefighters available in their communities. It was stated that the Safer grant changed from 75 percent to 100 percent and if received could possibly reopen Station 23.
Also part of the discussion items along with Station 23 during the meeting was contract services with Modesto Fire. According to Betty Hannah, SCFPD Administrative Assistant III/Board Clerk, officials with Modesto Fire requested the meeting with SCFPD and the reason for the meeting is unknown. During the meeting it was stated that Modesto Fire canceled the original meeting and that Modesto Fire was going to have a finance meeting and wanted to reschedule a session with the Stanislaus Consolidated board.
With a unanimous vote SCFPD adopted the resolution for the employee contribution for CalPERS (California Public Employees' Retirement System) increase from 9 percent to 12 percent. This new increase will take effect in November. CalPERS is a public pension fund, retirement and health benefits for California public employees.