News for those who live, work and play in the Santiam Canyon

New IDFPD board holds first meeting

Your Idahna-Detroit Fire District Board of Directors held a meeting on Friday evening. With the resignations of three of the four sitting board members, Marion County Board of Commissioners appointed four new board members to fill out the open positions to create a quorum for the board to be able to function.

The board meeting was called to order at 5 p.m. All board members took our oath of office (Director Greg Dyke, Director Serena Morones, Director Matt Lofton, Director Don Tesdal and myself).

The board formally accepted the resignations of former directors Schultz, Stice, Skeeters and Ziebert.

Through nomination/motion, I was appointed Board President, Director Tesdal was appointed Vice-President and Director Morones was appointed Secretary-Treasurer.

Next there was lengthy discussion regarding appointing an Interim Fire Chief. Retired Fire Chief Kevin Clark was present and offered his assistance as a transition to finding a permanent fire chief. Clark spoke to his experience, and there was discussion as to what his services would entail and to what extent.  

A motion was made to appoint Clark as Interim Fire Chief, negotiate a contract and pay him $25 per hour for up to 24 hours a week for his services. The motion passed.

There was discussion about the development and proposal of the budget for the coming year.  It was determined there were budget committee members already in place. After lengthy discussion, Office Administrator Laura Harris was appointed Budget Officer for this coming fiscal year. 

Lance Marshal from Marion Forks Investment Group was present to discuss the property on Blowout Road that has been a possible location for a new fire station. 

After discussion it was determined the thoughts of the investment group was the property would/could potentially be donated to the district, as long as the remainder of the property could still be used to replace the residence.  

There was discussion around set backs, right of ways and what could be allowed on the property.  There were some research topics that will be investigated and brought back to the board.

Discussion happened around a new fire station design committee. The discussion included looking at the current Idanha location and proposed fire station, as well as the Blowout Road property with potentially a different building design. Discussion ensued that department and community stake holder participation is a must. Director Dyke will be leading this committee.

Detroit Mayor Jim Trett and Councilor Eric Page were present to discuss the Detroit Civic Center and the two-bay portion of the building. 

Mayor Trett stated the city will take possession of and move into the building in the very near future. He said it was the city’s desire to come to an agreement to allow the fire district to utilize the two bays to house fire apparatus. Further discussion will happen regarding a written agreement.

There was discussion on the hiring process for a permanent fire chief.  It was determined to review/develop a position description for fire chief before posting the position. The position description will be brought back to the board for review at our next meeting.

Discussion was had around the current status of volunteers and status of district coverage. While this is technically an operational issue and not in the board of directors typical purview, we expressed our concern of the current status of organization and agreed this is an issue for the fire chief.

After discussion, it was approved to set our regularly scheduled monthly meeting to the first Thursday of each month at 6 p.m.

We agreed to hold a special meeting next Friday, April 22 at 5 p.m. to review the proposed position description for fire chief and any other business that may need to be addressed.

A motion was made and approved to assign all board members as signers on all of the district’s financial accounts.

All board members introduced themselves and provided a little information about themselves and what experience they bring to the organization.

Director Morones stated she owns a forensic auditing company and will be digging into the district’s financial practices as an organization to ensure what we do is appropriate and has appropriate financial controls. She made it very clear she is not accusing anyone of anything, just wanting to make sure we are doing things correctly.

The meeting was adjourned.

By Brandon Hamilton
Idanha-Detroit Fire District Board President

Previous Article

Take Back Drug Day set for April 30

Next Article

Detroit Fishing Derby looking for volunteers

You might be interested in …

Incumbents lead for Detroit council seats

Detroit voters are looking to its incumbent councilors to keep guiding the Santiam Canyon city, which is still in recovery from the 2020 wildfires. City Council incumbents Michele Tesdal (73 votes, 26.74%), Denny Nielsen (63 […]

Santiam Canyon fire recovery meeting set for Nov. 5

Marion County is hosting a public meeting on Saturday, Nov. 5 to discuss a Santiam Canyon fire-recovery plan. The event runs from 11 a.m. to 12:30 p.m. at the Detroit Community Center, 345 Santiam Ave. […]