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Curmudgeon's Corner

cur-mud-geon: anyone who hates hypocrisy and pretense and has the temerity to say so; anyone with the habit of pointing out unpleasant facts in an engaging and humorous manner

Fire Chief EMT-Certification Required?

Germantown, Village Board

The Public Safety Committee met again Wednesday evening and, according to the Journal Sentinel that quotes Trustee Al Vanderheiden, Chairman Langer wanted a couple of things decided.

He proposed the hiring of two part-time firefighters as a way to cut down on over-time.  His motion died for lack of a second.  Apparently that wasn't too popular an idea.  Would that solution have saved money for the citizens or was it more intended to punish the Chief and Captain Matt Karpinski who is the 'part-time firefighter' who has earned more than $35,000 in the past two years.

Langer also discussed the need for the Chief to become EMT-certified.  My first thought was, 'how many fire chiefs are EMT-certified, and, of those, how many are first responders that would use those skills regularly?'

Was this a sincere effort to improve our response teams or was it more intended to set the Chief up for failure?  And, if not failure, was it simply intended as another 'shot across the bow' in what is beginning to seem more and more like a parochial squabble that should be beneath an elected official?

Wisely, the Committee took no action on this but suggested that it was more in the arena of the Police and Fire Commission to make such changes in the requirements for the position of chief if it felt that was necessary.  Even after his resignation as a part-time firefighter, Langer has the 'bully pulpit' of the Public Safety Committee. 

Maybe it is time for a Committee change to be made by the Village President as we suggested some time ago.

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