A Fire District 3 Board of Directors public meeting Mar. 25 at 5:15 p.m. lasted no more than 10 minutes,
but was the finalization of a process that has entailed some half dozen executive sessions since the beginning of 2010 and the hiring of an outside firm to evaluate the district.
Board President John Curtis called the Mar. 25 meeting to order and announced that negotiations with David Hard, who had been fire chief since late in 2007, had broken off.
At that point Curtis asked if there was a motion and a motion was made to terminate Fire Chief Dave Hard without cause. This also meant the termination was immediate and compensation would also conclude.
Hard had been on administrative leave following an executive session Feb. 9.
The process for a new fire chief will begin with assistance from Emergency Services Consulting International.
Greg Winfrey is acting interim fire chief. He said he had no desire to become the permanent fire chief. Just prior to being named interim fire chief, he had been named interim operations chief. His regular position is battalion chief. He has 36 years experience in the fire business and has been with District 3 for 4 ½ years.
Hard came to District 3 in the later part of 2007 from Klamath County where he was chief of Fire District No 1. He began his fire service as a volunteer in 1974 in Aurora, Colorado. Prior to being chief with Klamath County, he served as assistant chief and fire marshal for Ashland.
Hard was hired following the resignation of Barry Hutchings, who left for personal reasons the end of March 2007 after serving as District 3 Fire Chief for 10 months.
“This has been an incredibly difficult decision,” said Curtis. He gave appreciation to the executive staff and to all district personnel and said “I am confident the district can pull together and move forward.”
Member Colin Fagan, who attended via tele-conference, said “ I greatly appreciate the willingness of the executive staff and members.”
By Nancy Leonard
Of the Independent