QUESTION: Do you support continuing the joint city/county fire service? If not, how would you change it? Do you support the role of the city’s fire chief in overseeing the system?
Yes. Who wouldn’t? Yes, as acceptable by both entities. I will accept any changes that are fiscally responsible and improve fire service.
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I definitely support the joint city/county fire service. It is a common sense way to deliver an essential public service and an example of something we should be doing more of in the city of Columbia and Richland County. I also believe that the fire chief should be in charge of the system. Public safety agencies require clearly accountable leadership.
I support continuing the joint fire service. The proposed city contract makes a number of changes that promote equity and cost sharing between Columbia and Richland County. It creates a seamless fire service system that benefits everyone. Further, while I believe that fundamentally the chief has to be the person in charge of the department, I support establishing a joint commission to make sure the county has a say in hiring and evaluating the chief.