Feature Articles


FFPD June board meeting

By LC Grady

The Falcon Fire Protection District held its regular board meeting June 21 at 3 p.m. at the meeting room of the new Falcon Fire administration building. Directors Jim Reid, Terry Reed and Steve Podoll and Ray Hawkins were present. Also present were Fire Chief Trent Harwig, Deputy Chief Jeff Petersma and attorney Joan Fritsche, legal counsel for the district.  

Public comment

After opening the meeting, Reid invited public comments. Mike Collins, the FFPD chaplain and former director announced that Jerry Marriott, one of the founding members of the fire department passed away on June 17. Harwig provided funeral details for interested parties.

Director resignation and replacement

Harwig informed the board that he received a letter of resignation from Cory Galicia, board director, earlier in the day. Galicia is changing jobs and will not be able to fulfill the rest of his term on the board. Harwig asked Joan Fritsche how to proceed regarding Galicia’s replacement. Fritsche said there was no statutory process for filling a board vacancy, but if the board wanted to appoint a replacement it had to be done at the board meeting. That was the only requirement other than having a candidate who satisfied all the requirements. Reid asked if there was anyone in the audience who would be interested in serving on the board. Former directors Tom Kerby and Dan Kupferer, who were present in the audience, expressed interest in filling the vacancy. Kupferer then deferred to Kerby. Harwig said Kerby served as a director for eight years and did not run for reelection due to the term limits restriction. That restriction was voted down in the most recent election, making him an eligible candidate again.  Harwig recommended Kerby for the position. The board unanimously approved Kerby  as Galicia’s replacement. Fritsche said he cannot conduct official board business until his oath is filed with the clerk and recorder. 

Swearing in ceremony

Brandon McKenna was sworn in by Harwig as a lieutenant. After repeating the oath, he had a new badge pinned on by a colleague.

Treasurer’s report

Harwig reported that 41.7% of the fiscal year was complete as of May 31. The general fund had received 56% of its budgeted revenues. Expenditures across all fund categories were at 40%. 

The Ambulance Transport Fund has received 49% of budgeted revenues. Across all categories, the expenses show 34%.  

The Capital Projects Fund was at 53% of budgeted revenue. Total expenses in the Capital Projects Fund across all categories are at 27%. Harwig informed the directors that the Capital Projects Fund budgeted for the maintenance building, ladder truck and for a cabin chassis for one of three planned brush trucks. He said that the department was notified that the order for brush truck cabin chassis was cancelled by the factory. They helped the FFPD obtain another cabin chassis from Greeley. Then, they told the department that the originally ordered cabin chassis arrived. Although under no obligation to purchase it at this point, Harwig recommended the department buy it since there is money in the budget, and the department has plans to purchase a total of three of these anyway. The board approved his request. 

The Rural Water Fund was at 11% of budgeted expenses. 

Staff/operations reports

Deputy Chief Jeff Petersma presented directors with reports in their new format. It included a pie chart of incidents — rescue and EMS representing 68% of calls, good intent calls were at 18%, false alarms at 5%, service calls at 4%, fire 3% and hazardous conditions at 2%.

Fire prevention report

Kauffman presented the Fire Inspector Report. He conducted 21 building inspections, 10 follow-up building inspections, four fire finals, one partial final, one underground fire test, one El Paso County development review, one Firewise evaluation. He informed the directors of a new snow equipment building storage coming to Meadow Lake Airport. Kauffman also completed the last school annual fire inspection in May with D 49 personnel and the Colorado Springs Fire Department. The last point he made related to the 2021 International Fire Code amendments. They are on hold as a result of new Colorado legislation under review, which might take from two months to possibly six years. 

Station 1/El Paso County Sheriff substation update

Harwig updated directors that the EPCSO was still planning to build the substation and are in process of securing the funds. 

Maintenance building

Kupferer provided an update on the development plan for the maintenance building still in progress; the county engineer is reviewing the grading and drainage. It appears that the drainage pond might be little undersized and might have an incorrect side slope on one side and needs to be regraded to correct these issues. Kupferer expressed concern about revisions from the county and suggested waiting on asking for bids until the county responds.

Board meetings are held the third Wednesday of each month at 3 p.m. in the meeting room at the Falcon Fire Administration building, 7030 Old Meridian Road. All meetings are open to the public, except for executive sessions.

Chief Trent Harwig and Jim Reid

As Chief Trent Harwig and Jim Reid, president of the FFPD board watch as Brandon McKenna receives the new lieutenant badge at a swearing in ceremony.

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