Automatic Aid Agreement back on the table

Reported by: Terri Hendry
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Updated: 5/14/2014 6:49 pm
RENO, Nev. ( & KRNV) -- A new automatic aid agreement will be made to the City of Reno.

Last night, Washoe County Commissioners, acting as the County's Fire Board, directed the Truckee Meadows Fire Protection Chief to make an offer to the City. "In the event they have stations browned out as a result of lay-offs, we will be making an offer of help to the City to see if we can be helpful in some way," said Truckee Meadows Fire Chief Charlie Moore.

In the past, the City has resisted automatic aid agreements due to costs. City officials said Reno ends up providing far more assistance to the county.

The new offer would be for a six-month trial period. During this time, the costs would be noted for further evaluation.

County Commissioners also accepted a Blue Ribbon Committee Report on the way fire services in all of Washoe County is delivered. The committee was made up of 11 citizens. They took nine months to evaluate services to look at ways fire agencies could better collaborate to provide regional services.

The report contains ten key findings. The report said mutual aid is too slow, and the community expects the closest unit to respond regardless of jurisdiction. It also said effectiveness and efficiency is sacrificed for local control.

Some of the challenges to better collaboration include funding, labor contracts and taxation. Washoe County officials expect to take the report to neighborhood groups and homeowners' associations to see if there is any support for the report's recommendations.
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