Wednesday, January 2, 2019

CSFD response times slow, firefighter ballot measure found sufficient

Posted By on Wed, Jan 2, 2019 at 11:28 AM

click to enlarge COLORADO SPRINGS FIRE DEPARTMENT MAP AND DATA
  • Colorado Springs Fire Department map and data
The Colorado Springs Fire Department has seen response times get slower across the city over the last year, meaning it takes firefighters longer to get to the scene of a car crash, house fire or rescue.

While Mayor John Suthers tells us his plan to pump up the payroll at the CSFD over four years will change all that, firefighters aren't convinced and want a seat at the table to negotiate not only pay but spending on apparatus and fire stations.

Voters will get a chance to weigh in on whether to grant firefighters collective bargaining power, a measure opposed by Suthers.

On Dec. 21, the firefighter group issued this news release announcing the ballot measure petitions had been found sufficient by City Clerk Sarah Johnson. It will appear on the April 2 city ballot, on which voters also will elect a mayor and three at-large City Council members:
This week, the Colorado Springs Professional Firefighters Association were contacted by the City Clerk and informed that the firefighters officially have a spot on the April 2019 ballot.

Firefighters needed 15,907 valid signatures to secure a spot on the ballot. Due to overwhelming support from the community, firefighters submitted over 33,000 raw signatures in November. According to the validation report received from the City Clerk this week, 17,332 signatures were considered “valid”. This generous submission is a testament to the level of support that firefighters are already receiving with regards to their campaign “Firefighters for a Safer Colorado Springs”.

Now that the Colorado Springs Firefighters officially have a spot on the ballot, the full campaign begins. Until the election on April 2nd, firefighters will be visible in the community educating the citizens about the need for this public safety initiative. This measure will ensure that firefighters have a guaranteed voice in public safety decisions. In addition, this measure seeks to ensure that the residents can always count on quality service that comes with; highly trained firefighters, proper staffing, and much needed equipment and fire trucks.

Dave Noblitt, President of IAFF Local 5, stated “This proposed ballot measure would solidify the seat at the table that firefighters desperately need to serve the community effectively. We look forward to talking to the citizens about this important public safety measure."

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