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The original item was published from 2/14/2018 9:39:19 AM to 5/15/2018 12:00:07 AM.

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Posted on: February 14, 2018

[ARCHIVED] Fire Consolidation Study reports Sterling Heights "serves constituents well"

Results of a Fire Consolidation Feasibility Study recently received by the City reveals Fire Department currently provides a high level of service to residents and explores how SHFD could further partner with neighboring departments to serve the region.

Since 2015, the City of Sterling Heights has been a part of a Fire Consolidation Feasibility Study along with Clinton Township, Harrison Township and Mt. Clemens in partnership with the Macomb County Office of Emergency Management and Communications. The goal of the study was to research possible ways to improve the delivery of various fire department services across the identified geographic area.

Results from the Fire Study, managed by TriData LLC of Arlington, Virginia, recommended future options to consider consolidation of selected functions such as training, inspections, dispatch, vehicles maintenance and EMS quality control. Another area highlighted for consideration of the participating departments would be operational consolidation of automatic aid, meaning the closest unit to an emergency would respond. The report considers full consolidation of the four participating departments.

This study was awarded a grant from the State of Michigan through the Competitive Grant Assistance Program to cover 25% matching funds, up to $50,000. The rest of the funding was divided between the municipalities using a calculation determined by population. The County and the Fire Unions also provided funding for the study.

“We are happy to receive the study results because, if there is a way to provide the same or better services to our community that could be financially sustained for many years to come, I wanted to see that road map,” said Fire Chief Chris Martin.  “The study suggests many ways that the communities can work together to provide better fire services; it is up to the cities to determine how we will implement any of the suggestions provided.”

Chief Martin said while the study was helpful, he does not believe the data and associated costs with consolidation would provide a justifiable service increase to residents.  “Actually consolidating departments does not appear to be a viable option due to the significant cost increases,” said Chief Martin. 

The report is available for public viewing on the City’s website by clicking “Fire Department” and choosing “Fire Consolidation Study Report” on the left-hand toolbar.

For questions or more information, please contact Fire Chief Chris Martin at (586) 446-2951 or via email at cmartin@sterling-heights.net

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