City firefighting plan on the table Monday

(Cornwall Newswatch/File)

CORNWALL — The long-awaited Fire Master Plan for the city will be presented to councillors Monday night.

Fire Chief Pierre Voisine will make a presentation and a nine-page PowerPoint presentation given to council ahead of time addresses a number of areas including staffing levels.

Not only does it touch on strengthening training and making improvements in the front office but it also suggests there needs to be 13.72 firefighters per platoon from a purely mathematical standpoint.

Council won’t make a decision Monday night but will accept the report to take some sort of action on Sept. 14.

Firefighting staffing levels became a hot-button topic during budget time with council holding off on filling four firefighting positions until Voisine was in his new role.

Coun. Andre Rivette was the most staunch opponent at the time to adding positions suggesting there should be 13 firefighters on a platoon in order to save costs.

Monday night’s presentation doesn’t spell out how the 13.72 firefighters complement would be achieved although it suggests overtime costs need to be reduced and that would be achieved through hiring. Under the firefighter’s current collective agreement, there’s no latitude to hire part-time firefighters.

“Even in 2012, when fully staffed overtime reach(ed) $200K,” said the report.

Monday night’s meeting starts at 7 p.m.

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