Open forum for Aug. 21, 2014

Scandia employee policy

As a member of Scandia Fire and Rescue, I have heard all about the “perk” of allowing car washing for department members.

I have served for about 24 years and maybe washed my car a handful of times. This “perk” is rarely used and a ridiculous topic for Scandia’s part-time leaders. There’s more to the story.

This “perk” is in place for members who take care of duties on their own time, saving Scandia residents costs of running their fire department. These duties, unknown to the public, are the unclaimed maintenance and upgrades at the fire station with no compensation requested.

As volunteers, department members recently spent hours installing an industrial washing machine for turnout gear and rigging an ATV for fire service. Taxes saved and pride in a job well done are the only compensation for department volunteers – that and a so-called “perk” or two.

Scandia leadership is using a tiny law to prevent use of “city equipment” for private use to eliminate this “perk.” Councilmen Jim Schneider and Chris Ness supported the fire department when the others did not.

If Scandia leadership keeps acting this way, you the citizen will lose. Volunteer efforts could be discouraged, causing budgets to rise as volunteer work is billed or contracted. City administration is continually trying to create more work to justify a job at your cost.

However, Scandia government is all about creating something to justify its existence to a populace that doesn’t really care whether it exists or not.

Erich Kertzscher