Members of the Davis Professional Firefighters Association Local 3494, who make up 31 of the 36 firefighters serving the city of Davis, continue to publicly voice their dissatisfaction over the way city leaders have managed the Fire Department recently.
Union members picketed outside City Hall on Tuesday before the City Council meeting, carrying signs that said “Firefighters for a Safe Davis” in reference to decisions by the city that union officials have said will hinder fire service in Davis.
After the protest, for the second meeting in a row firefighters spoke during public comment of the council meeting to reiterate their criticisms.
Specifically, the union — almost all of whose members attended Tuesday’s meeting — has concerns with recent discussions over the possibility of closing Station 31 at Fifth and E streets downtown and building a new station farther north; the reduction in staffing levels the council put in place in May; and the fact that the department has gone without a full-time fire chief since 2009.
In July, the union took a vote of no confidence in Police Chief Landy Black and Assistant Police Chief Steve Pierce, who were asked to take over operation of the Fire Department earlier this year to allow city management time to decide whether to hire a new full-time chief or have UC Davis Fire Chief Nathan Trauernicht oversee city fire operations.
City Manager Steve Pinkerton said Tuesday he will bring a recommendation regarding the fire chief issue to the City Council on Oct. 15.
— Reach Tom Sakash at firstname.lastname@example.org or 530-747-8057. Follow him on Twitter at @TomSakash