GIFD Fire Commissioners Minutes June 9, 2014


(Minutes pending approval) 

June 9, 2014 

The Regular Fire Commissioners meeting was called to order at 7:00 PM by Commissioner Chip Bogosian, Chairman.  

Present: Commissioners Bogosian, Murphy and Bear, Assistant Chief G. Francis, Medical Officer N. White, Captain Pyke, Public Information Officer L. Francis, Olivia Snell, Tom Fouts, Juby Fouts and Secretary Meekins. 

Guest: Edith Walden.  

The minutes of May 12, 2014 were approved with two corrections 1) The donations for Seth Jefferds was not $1,000. 2) Added to the Officer’s meeting minutes was “discussed personnel issues.” 

 Treasurer’s Report: Ending May Operating Fund balance $60,585.99 Ending May Investment Fund balance $76,261.86. Total expenditures $5,070.22. 

$1,029.39 was reported on the Budget, but was actually an expenditure in March. Key points were reported from the May 22nd Budget meeting. A ‘Capital Fund’ will be established for future capital purchases. The Commissioners voted unanimously to move $35K from the current Investment Fund into the new Capital Fund. Furthermore, in May and November of every year $5k will be moved from Cash into the Capital Fund, if possible. It was decided that the District can meet its normal obligations if it has cash reserves of $10k/month for April to October and October to April. Every year in February the Cash Balance will be reviewed with an eye towards moving excess cash into the Investment Fund. Additionally, minor formatting adjustments were made to the Budget for ease of understanding. A Procurement Policy was discussed, but not decided upon. And the Commissioners have obligated to reviewing the Budget during Regular Monthly Meetings and making adjustments where necessary. 

 Jodi had met with Alana Pizzuto, Skagit County Deputy Treasurer to discuss opportunities for a better return on our investments, which are currently in the State Pool. Alana said that if we told her an amount and length of maturity, she would give suggestions. A question was asked of the fee for diversifying investments. Jodi said she would ask Alana.  

New Business: Mike Stamper submitted a letter of resignation (dated May 5, 2014) via email on June 5, 2014. The Board did not accept his resignation pending advice on how to proceed with Mike’s complaint of workplace harassment. A lengthy dialog ensued. Commissioner Murphy stated his displeasure that the Officers reviewed Mike’s performance during two Officer’s meetings. He reminded everyone in attendance that it is the sole duty of the Board to review an employee’s performance. Tom Fouts stated that the Officers were not trying to usurp the authority of the Board, only attempting to avoid any public ‘scene’. Nancy White made known her feelings at having Mike’s resignation not accepted and wanted to know how long after the fact she could make a claim of workplace harassment. Commissioner Bear stated that ALL personnel issues need to be submitted, in writing, to the Board. Gerry Francis was unanimously named Interim Chief at $650/month contingent on Mike not returning to his duties as Chief. It was decided that at the conclusion of the evening the meeting would be suspended until Chip Bogosian could solicit advice on how to proceed with this issue. Tom Murphy then excused himself from the remainder of the meeting to attend to personal matters.  

Tom Fouts handed out a letter (see attached) that he authored and then read it aloud. Both he and Juby are seriously hurt and upset by the subjective actions of the EMS Council and several of their employees. Upon trying to rectify the problem they found that they were summarily dismissed and that the Council did not have an established procedure for how to handle their complaint and present them an avenue to fix the issue. Tom’s letter is a call for establishing a process for to have their grievance heard and corrected. Chip said he would call the Council and speak with Joel Pratt, the Training Coordinator or Mark Raaka, the new Director to see what could be done. 

 Jodi received an email, on June 9th  from Linda Christensen at Skagit County, asking for an updated inventory of existing capital facilities owned by the District. Mike Stamper responded to the email. Jodi asked Gerry if he agreed with Mike’s response. He said he does, except that #1711 has a capacity of 1000 gals, not 750. 

Jodi asked who would take over the duties of updating the Department website? Gerry said he would do it. Deb said she would assist, if needed. And Olivia volunteered to do it since she is currently administering the Department social media presence.  

Enduris sent an email stating that there are no coverage changes for policy year 2015. There is an anticipated Premium increase of 3%.  

A letter was received from Skagit County Department of Emergency Management, and read aloud by Deb Bear requesting an update to our Natural Hazard Mitigation Plan. As there is no funding, there will be no changes made to our existing plan. Jodi will write a response and Chip will present it.  

Old Business: Chip stated that the boat that was donated to the Fire Dept. had to be listed for sale or donated to a non-profit agency. Edith took exception to this because Dave Shannon was understood to have been told that it would be returned to him. Chip stated that the decision to return it to Mr. Shannon was a mistake and not possible without first putting it up for bid. Chip will explain this to Mr. Shannon.  

Open: Edith had nothing ask or announce.  

Chief’s Report: See attached report. Additionally, Gerry said that there is a need to widen the door in front of #1712. There is only about ¼ “ of clearance on each side of the truck. Bob White is looking into what is necessary to accomplish this project. 

 The commissioners reviewed the invoices from May 10-June 5th, 2014 and approved the invoices in the amount of $3,232.22 and payroll of $1,838.00 for a Grand total of $5,070.22.  

The meeting was suspended pending information/advice on how to proceed with Mike Stamper’s resignation and claim of workplace harrassment.  

The next regular meeting will be July 14, 2014, at 7 PM in the Fire Hall.  

The meeting was reconvened at 2pm on June 12, 2014 at the Fire Hall. Present were: Tom Murphy, Chip Bogosian, Deb Bear, Gerry Francis, Tom Fouts, Juby Fouts, Lorraine Francis, Edith Walden and Jodi Meekins. 

 Chip called Enduris at (509) 838-0910 and spoke with Joy, who put him in contact with Cheryl Brand. She returned his call on June 12th. She asked for documentation in order to evaluate and make a recommendation of how to proceed with Mike Stamper’s claim of workplace harassment. Gerry Francis will fax to her (fax 509-747-3875) the email from Mike with his letter of resignation, the next email from Mike with the subject: Rumors, the letter dated June 9, 2014 re: Workplace Harassment Complaint, Skagit County Fire District 17 policy guidelines and any notes that are available from the May and June Officer’s Meeting.  

Another vote was unanimous naming Gerry Francis as Interim Chief at $650/month. There will be no Interim Asst. Chief. Mike Stamper will be placed on Administrative leave, at his normal salary of $450 per month, until this matter is resolved. Chip will provide written notice to Mike.  

Juby Fouts presented a letter to the Commissioners that she has sent to Skagit EMS. Both Juby and Tom Fouts expressed complete dissatisfaction with the letter that they received from Skagit EMS outlining a course of action for retesting. Deb Bear also stated that the proposed “remedy” was unfair, stressful and does not answer the systemic problem with OTEP testing. Deb agreed to meet with Mark Raaka when he is on Guemes Island next week to find out if there is anything that the Commissioners can do or add regarding this matter.  

Resolution 333: Establishing a Capital Fund had been passed at the Budget Meeting and was presented for signatures.  

The meeting was adjourned at 3:50 pm.  


Submitted by

Jodi Meekins, Secretary  



Skagit County Fire District 17 

Commissioner Chip Bogosian, Chairman 

Chief's Report May 2014

GIFD Budget Report June 2014

Tom Fouts Letter

Tags: GIFD Commissioners Minutes