April 10, 2013
New: April 10, 2:09 p.m.
Negotiations to reduce the amount Sammamish pays for fire service have been less than fruitful. So at is April 2 meeting, the City Council formally authorized City Manager Ben Yazici to study options outside of remaining a member of Eastside Fire & Rescue.
“We are giving (Yazici) the OK to go ahead and examine the alternatives,” said Mayor Tom Odell. Read more
March 31, 2013
New: March 31, 11:16 a.m.
Eastside Fire & Rescue partners are generally unwilling to change the way they fund the agency in order to save Sammamish a few bucks.
At a March 18 funding model committee meeting, members told Sammamish they wanted to find some way to preserve the partnership, but they were unwilling to change the current funding arrangement. Read more
March 28, 2013
The Eastside Fire & Rescue board set seven 2013 goals for Fire Chief Lee Soptich to fulfill at its March 14 board meeting.
Top on the list is to prepare for the 2014 collective bargaining agreement with the firefighters’ union, which also includes hiring an attorney to provide comparison data. Read more
February 14, 2013
New: Feb. 14, 1:16 p.m.
Eastside Fire & Rescue partners had the equivalent of couple’s counseling at a Feb. 7 meeting, complete with accusations of duplicity and calls to salvage fraying relationships.
With less than two years left on the agency’s current interlocal agreement, and months of prep work necessary if a partner were to go somewhere else for fire service, partners began laying out their positions on the thorny issue of funding the agency. EFR serves the cities of Sammamish, Issaquah, North Bend and King County fire districts 10 and 38. Read more
January 11, 2013
New: Jan. 11, 10:18 a.m.
Sammamish could trim its fire service costs by between $156,000 and $314,000 a year if Eastside Fire & Rescue partners agree to a new funding model that reflects the amount of calls each jurisdiction produces.
But it remains to be seen whether other partners that make up the fire consortium – namely the cities of Issaquah and North Bend – would sign on to a new funding method that would substantially increase their fire bills in the name of maintaining the current incarnation of EFR past 2014. Read more
January 9, 2013
Eastside Fire & Rescue needs volunteer firefighters to serve rural communities in rural King County, including Lake Joy, Maple Hills, Preston, Tiger Mountain and Wilderness Rim.
The agency needs men and women to assist in delivering emergency firefighting and medical services. Officials extended the application deadline to 5 p.m. Jan. 23. Read more
January 6, 2013
New: Jan. 6, 2:17 p.m.
Eastside Fire & Rescue has informed its dispatching service that it intends to look for another agency to handle its calls at the end of 2013 unless it sees significant progress on a long-delayed software upgrade.
EFR Chief Lee Soptich said he informed Bellevue-based NORCOM, which coordinates emergency response for 14 fire districts and five police departments from Shoreline to North Bend, of his intentions last month following repeated delays in the implementation of a new computer system that’s been years in the making. Read more
December 30, 2012
New: Dec. 30, 10:16 a.m.
A Sammamish fire station was one of two that was closed for 12 hours after Eastside Fire & Rescue’s budget for overtime pay ran low.
Station 81, 2030 212th Ave. S.E. in Sammamish, was closed from 8 a.m. to 8 p.m. Dec. 16. The agency also chose to close Station 72, on Maple Street in Issaquah, from 8 a.m. to 8 p.m. Dec. 19. A third station – number 71, on Sunset Way in Issaquah – was staffed by two firefighters instead of the typical three for six hours on Dec. 14. Read more
December 19, 2012
Eastside Fire & Rescue firefighters had good reason Dec. 7 to call the man dangling upside down from a rope over the swollen Snoqualmie River a dummy.
He celebrated Washington’s new law that allows recreational use of marijuana by making a homemade bungee cord, tied it to the suspension bridge over the river at Tolt-MacDonald Park in Carnation, and jumped. But he apparently hadn’t thought about how he was going to get back on the bridge after the jump. Read more
November 14, 2012
Sammamish representatives signed off on a plan to spend more than $268,000 on adding a new out-building behind Eastside Fire & Rescue’s headquarters Nov. 8, but say it should not be seen as a commitment to the city staying with EF&R past 2014.
“I wouldn’t read into it too much,” Mayor Tom Odell said in an interview after the vote. Read more