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Hey! Who’s in charge here?

September 15, 2011 • Local News

Emily Russo Miller
Record Staff Writer

(Dexter Mayor Dave White, as seen in a file photograph dated Feb. 26, 2011. Emily Russo Miller Photo)

Dexter town councilors in a meeting Tuesday voted to strip Login to read more

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One Response to Hey! Who’s in charge here?

  1. jafff says:

    I started to let this pass, but as a Veteran Fire Fighter with over 20 years of service I have to make a comment.
    The Fire Department belongs to the town of Dexter. The Fire Chief is responsible for the daily operation of it, under the Direction of the Mayor and Council. All the funding for it comes through the Mayor’s office first and is budgeted accordingly.
    All Dave White has ask for the Chief of the department to do, is provide him with training records, as proof that his department is trained in the services they are provided as a certified entity.
    They are refusing to do so, in a timely, reasonable manner.

    The trucks they drive and maintain require a special license, not just a regular license for a car. Certification as an EMT requires continued education and other documented training.
    Refusing to provide documentation for something as simple as training is unprofessional on part of the Fire Chief. Yes, volunteers are professionals and held to the same standard as paid departments. They also have to abide by rules governing full time employees and recognize the chain of command, which is being ignored here. They do receive a retirement and other benefits, free training in a skilled profession among them, as compensation for their service.
    When the “good ol’ boy” attitude reflected here is allowed to continue, only bad can come of it. By virtue of his actions, the Fire Chief is saying he cannot be held accountable to anyone, including the Mayor and the council.
    This attitude is why we’ve had at least one Chief in this area busted for embezzlement and have fire and law enforcement, as well as elected officials getting busted for gun smuggling, selling department equipment on ebay and other such activity.
    Those who have nothing to hide, hide nothing. The State Fire Marshal’s office should intervene in this case and hold an audit of the department to insure their records reflect their capabilities and comply with regulations.

    Yes they save lives and are heroes one and all, but that does not put them above the law and rules that everyone else has to abide by.
    It’s nice to know the person fighting the fire in your home, is certified to so and drove there legally. A person improperly trained, in EMS and fire suppression can do more harm than good on a scene.
    A true professional maintains both the physical skills and the documentation needed to prove it.

    The department is not the Chief’s personal property. It is regulated by the Federal, State and local government.

    Dave White is trying to run the town of Dexter like a municipality, not a good ol’ boys club. His council and fire chief would definitely point at him and say he’s the boss, if they got sued for Fire Malpractice or other mistake made during the course of responding to an emergency. Townships as near as Ruidoso could testify to who’s in charge when it comes down to that type of lawsuit.
    Let one of the vehicles get involved in an accident and see how many training records are asked for.

    The Mayor of Jimenez Springs had a similar problem with his Fire Chief, with the difference being his council broke the “good ol’ boy” mind set and backed him on it.
    The Mayor of Dexter is within his authority to ask for the training records.
    To respond to such a request with the arrogance and ignorance displayed in your article only reflects badly on an otherwise honorable profession.
    Thank you

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