Peabody council left with fire district quandary
Discussion about Peabody’s fourth fire district Monday left council members struggling to clarify duties between the city fire department and the fourth district.
“Truth be told, that’s what we’re looking into, is the organizational method,” mayor Tom Spencer said.
Having both entities could create confusion because the city’s chief is chosen by the council and mayor, while a different chief could be chosen for the fourth fire district, Spencer said. While that hasn’t been an issue, there is also the possibility the fire chief has to answer to both groups.
“We don’t want two separate entities telling the fire chief different things,” Spencer said.
All but one of the area’s fire trucks is owned by the fire district, but that means the one truck owned by Peabody is supposed to stay within city limits.
The fire district was helpful when it was established in 1969 because it helped with purchasing fire trucks, councilman Steve Rose said.
“It was the best thing that could ever be done as far as incorporating a tax base to get the vehicles we needed,” he said.
With the mutual aid agreement now in place, there is less chance of not having enough trucks respond to an emergency, Rose said.
“Nowadays with all the trucks and mutual aid, there’s really no need to worry about that,” he said.
Peabody’s next meeting will now be Dec. 10 instead of Dec. 9.
Last modified Nov. 27, 2019