Council Workshop on Fire Department Staffing Set for Thursday

City Council and Ocean City Fire Department officials will discuss a proposal to save money by changing the department staffing model.


City Council will hold a workshop meeting 6 p.m. Thursday, Jan. 5, to discuss a proposal to save money by changing the Ocean City Fire Department staffing model.

The public session is scheduled for 6 to 8 p.m. at the .

At a Nov. 29 City Council meeting, Councilman Keith Hartzell presented  that he suggests, over time, could save Ocean City taxpayers more than $400,000 annually. The basic premise of the proposal is to replace a select number of retiring firefighters with lower-paid emergency medical technicians.

Hartzell suggested the next step in the process should be a workshop with input from the mayor's administration and the Fire Department.

Fire Department representatives have questioned the feasibility of the proposal.

JM January 05, 2012 at 10:07 PM
Why is this mayor looking to screw public employees all of a sudden? The whole reason I voted against him was because he seemed to be buddy-buddy with all these guys. Now I'm hearing from family at Public Works that he has frozen everyone's salaries for 2012. This doesn't add up. Not necessarily complaining, but this is not making sense to me...
John K January 05, 2012 at 10:20 PM
All public employee unoins should be abolished Firefightersalary.org lists the average salary for state or local firefighters to be $36,000 to $59,000. Why are Ocean City firefighter salaries over $100,000 ? Ocean City police and teachers are also paid way over the average - Why? I would think it would be easy for the city to hire replacements --- non-union firefighters, police and teachers. Any firefighter that falsified their overtime for purchases not authorized in the budget should have been fired = not allowed to sue the city.
Beachy Keen January 05, 2012 at 10:31 PM
This whole things sounds like ongoing grudges and power plays between the council people, the fire department and the who's who of OC. I don't think anyone doubts that our fire department is one of the best---and yes they do come to help with smoke detectors---but I don't know why it is viewed as being adversarial to discuss ways of cutting costs all around. Home values are down, revenues are down, businesses are closing, jobs have been lost, taxes go up every year. I think that cost cutting in the areas of salaries, health benefits, and job titles should be explored without attacking the fire department and vice versa. It just doesn't look good for our town! Play nice.
Robert McKenna, MIKE January 06, 2012 at 02:50 PM
Not only are the salaries according to "John K" double for the firemen but this town has way to many overpaid ticket crazy police. The school teachers... that is a whole subject of its own. Only because so many people who own homes in Ocean City but live somewhere else in the winter, and vote at their winter residence, they do not get a say in Ocean City's need or no need for a public school. These residents do, however, get to pay taxes for a school that is not needed, but they don't get to vote to send Ocean City Children to the mainland. Instead OC buses children to the island so they can have enough students to warrant a school.
John K January 06, 2012 at 06:11 PM
The public sector "employees" have HUGE" Health Care and Retirement benefits for life. Most private sector retirees receive none of. Most private sector employers abandoned retirement benefits long ago. We private sector retired taxpayers are expected to pay for these exorbitant "benefits" to others when we don't receive them ourselves. I've heard that retirement pay for the public sector can amount to 60 or $70,000 plus healthcare for life.


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