TWENTYNINE PALMS WATER DISTRICT PREPARES FOR COUNTY TAKEOVER OF FIRE DEPARTMENT

TWENTYNINE PALMS WATER DISTRICT PREPARES FOR COUNTY TAKEOVER OF FIRE DEPARTMENT

The Twentynine Palms Water Board found out the cost to turn the Twentynine Palms Fire Department over to the County last night. Managing Editor Tami Roleff was in attendance and files this report. The Twentynine Palms Water District Board of Directors learned at its meeting last night that it will have to pay the Local Agency Formation Commission, or LAFCO, more than $20,000 as part of the application process to divest itself of the fire department. Although board members were assured the water district could cover the cost, Director Sam Moore said he thought the City of Twentynine Palms should “cough up some money to pay for the application fees.” Directors Bo Bourikas and Chancy Chambers were against that idea, though, saying it would just create hard feelings and drive a wedge between the two agencies. Fire Chief Jim Thompson told the board that he is talking with the County’s Union to ensure that his six career company officers would still have jobs after the County takes over the city’s fire services, although there are slots for only three captains in Twentynine Palms. As for himself, Chief Thompson told Z107.7 News that he is not part of this equation and that most likely there would be no position for him after the County takes over. An early retirement is most likely in his future.

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