Sunday, December 18, 2011

Council Debate

Last Monday night we had a very interesting Beiseker Village Council meeting!  A delegation had asked to address council regarding issues with the Beiseker Fire Department (BFD).  Their presentation was almost derailed when one of the "back-bench" delegates began yelling and name-calling. 

His points, no matter how valid they may have been, were negated by his behaviour!  Order was re-established and the original presenter made her points and comments on the issues.  I was most impressed by her demeanor and that of the rest of her supporters.

One point which interested me considerably was the perception that the volunteer members of the BFD had no insurance coverage if they were injured on a call out.  I am in the process of checking this out.  It seems to me only natural that those who give up their time and energy and risk their safety to be a part of our fire department be suitably covered by some kind of insurance. Stay tuned on this one.  (Dec. 20th follow-up:  Fire Department Insurance and Candy Canes)

Another point was that it was their perception that the Village Council was dragging their feet in drawing up an agreement with the County of Rocky View to share the responsibility of fire protection in this northeast corner of the county, including Beiseker.  I think Mayor Rowe made it very clear that negotiations have been actively going on for many months and will continue until a suitable compromise has been reached. 

Our situation is not the same as Irricana's.  The Irricana Fire Department was always a part of the North East Rocky View Fire Association (NERFA) and simply moved over into Rocky View's new fire protection program.  Beiseker, on the other hand, left NERFA with much bad feelings and anguish more than 20 years ago.  Beiseker is now starting back at square one!  

A negotiated agreement will be arrived at, but it must be in the best interest of the village and the county.  But it will happen!

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