Town Acts To Keep Fire District In Place

Town Acts To Keep

Fire District In Place

Wood Seeks Time To Figure Out Next Step

Bob Wood

ONEONTA – The Town of Oneonta will appear before state Supreme Court Judge Michael V. Coccoma at 1:30 p.m. Thursday in Cooperstown seeking to delay the dissolution of the town fire district until Dec. 31, 2019.

After the town Board of Fire Commissioners voted Sept. 20 to abruptly dissolve, the town needs time to adjust, said Supervisor Bob Wood.  “If different commissioners were elected (the second Tuesday in December) things might change,” he said.  “Or, it would allow us adequate time to create a district.”

On the first option, the commissioners’ chair, Johna Peachin, and Commissioner Ron Peters are up for election this December.  “I’m not going to run anybody against them,” said Wood, “but I hope someone would be interested enough in this issue to run.”

On the second, if what is a “fire district” were to be dissolved, a “fire protection district” could be created, which would allow the town board to negotiate with the City of Oneonta to ensure its paid fire department continues to provide protection to the same areas of the town, Wood said.

As for Thursday’s hearing, “I just want to have enough time to figure it out,” the supervisor said.

After an almost two-year standoff on a new contract between the town Board of Fire Commissioners and the city, the commissioners voted, 3-2, on Sept. 20 to dissolve.

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