The City of Janesville Police and Fire Commission agenda for Wednesday, September 26, lists the acceptance of Fire Chief Randy Banker’s resignation from the the City of Janesville and retirement from the fire service.
Baker is chief of both Milton and Janesville fire departments after the two cities began sharing administrative resources last October.
The two departments have been sharing fire services since February 2016, and an intergovernmental agreement expanded that in early 2017, according to the Janesville Gazette.
Baker’s retirement comes at a time of major changes on the horizon.
Milton is considering the construction of a new fire station and both cities are working on how to better cooperate.
Baker’s retirement also comes amid ongoing negotiations between the city and Janesville Firefighters Local 580 over a new contract.
The union, in a post Sept. 23 to its Facebook page, said that the city is retaliating after the union filed a grievance over the city changing a policy to prevent firefighters from washing their personal vehicles when on standby time while on duty.
The union then requested that the policy change be discussed during upcoming contract negotiations. The city refused and the union filed a grievance, according to the union.
The union then said they learned that any further action by the fire union would be met with an increase to their health insurance.
The city responded in a news release Monday that said fundamental issue is one of fairness to taxpayers.
According to the news release, there are a number of practices in the fire department that the public may not even know about that the city believes are not fair and seeks to change.
According to the city, firefighters do not have to perform any non-emergency job duties while being paid their normal salary on Saturday afternoons, Sundays, and holidays.
The city also says that during the state high school basketball tournament, on-duty firefighters must be allowed to watch the games on television during their workday.
For insurance, the city says the proposed plan includes monthly premium contribution increases of just $11 for single plans and $15 for family plans.
That is an increase of 8% or 11%, respectively, and is equivalent to the increase that all other city employees will experience, according to the news release.
For more go to WKOW: https://wkow.com/news/2018/09/25/breaking-janesville-police-and-fire-commission-agenda-lists-resignation-of-fire-chief-randy-banker/