I take issue with statements made by a disgruntled past employee of the district Betty M. Stonesiferin.
By state law the fire commissioners that are elected by you the voters govern our fire department. Budget is under the control of the fire commissioners. The administration may develop a recommended budget, but then it must go to the commissioners who make changes and than must pass it for implementation by the administration. Any changes after that approval must come before the commissioners. So the way our tax dollars are being spent falls in the lap of the commissioners and not the administration.
I believe the reason for the nonpassage of the last two levy lid lifts is due to the public’s resistance in passing any tax issues and the commissioners lack of support and lack of information given to the public as to what the issue is.
Let me first say that I am not opposed to unions; expect when they abuse their position at the expense of others. I have to agree with many of the things that David Fields had to say regarding the union control of our fire commissioners. You the taxpayers, not the union, employ the commissioners. Their charge is to represent you not the union. It has always seemed to me to be a conflict of interest when the commissioners who belong to a local of the same union as our firefighters are setting the salaries of the fire personnel in our district. The move to gain this control has been going on since 1997 and now with two of the three commissioner’s union members and union sponsored they control of the district. I can understand Jeff Granlund’s frustration. How can they represent the citizens of the district who pay the taxes? Food for thought, maybe it is time we start over and develop a five-commissioner district. It may make it harder for one group to have control.
With the resignation of Commissioner Granlund, who was up for re-election in November, who is the person who filed against him? There has been no information on who this person is and his/her background. Is it another union sponsored person? Is it another union member from another fire department? It is time to ask some questions about what is going on and who is controlling our fire district.
The reputation and integrity of the department is now in question. Specking as a past commissioner of Maple Valley Fire and Life Safety, let us please find a way the restore the good name of our fire district.