An Independent Review - Northumberland Municipal Fire Services

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An Independent Review - Northumberland Municipal Fire Services

© The Loomex Group 2021


Executive Summary

The intention of the Northumberland Municipal Fire Services Review (Review) is to provide the Fire Service Review Steering Committee (Steering Committee) and the Fire Chiefs with recommendations and information to make informed decisions regarding fire and life safety services for the seven Municipalities (Municipalities):

• Township of Alnwick/Haldimand

• Municipality of Brighton

• Town of Cobourg

• Township of Cramahe

• Township of Hamilton

• Municipality of Port Hope

• Municipality of Trent Hills

Each Department provides high-quality service for residents, businesses, and visitors to their Municipalities. Its goal(s) should be to build upon existing strengths, improve efficiencies, and proactively respond to the current and anticipated community needs effectively.

Following a Request for Proposal (RFP) process, the Steering Committee commissioned The Loomex Group to analyze and summarize all fire services and programs provided by the Departments and to examine each Department's core functions. Additionally, The Loomex Group explored opportunities to enhance fire service delivery by working together through partnerships and shared services to help manage future legislative pressures and the increased community demands for service.

There are many factors to consider when planning and undertaking a review that involves multiple departments and communities. Every municipality and fire service across the province has unique differences in socio-economic conditions, population, demographics, building stock, fire service delivery and capabilities, as is the case with the Departments serving the Northumberland County communities.

Emergency services are considered an essential service for the Municipalities, and due to the nature of the service, workers' safety is at higher risk than other service-type occupations. Therefore, it is vital to protect the firefighters (full-time, part-time, and volunteer) by ensuring appropriate and safe equipment and adequate staffing is available 24/7, as required. It is essential to ensure that firefighters are respected, reasonably compensated, and provided with appropriate benefits for their service.

The Review process assessed all aspects of the Departments and examined the possible alignment of services and resources. Opportunities exist to adjust and revise the Departments' structure and share services to improve effectiveness and implement cost efficiencies and cost avoidance.

The Review includes recommendations that stem from a comprehensive analysis of the Departments based on several factors, including but not limited to current legislation, bylaws, agreements, organizational structures, procurement, station coverage areas, and fire prevention and training programs.

With the support and guidance of the Steering Committee, the County of Northumberland Fire Chiefs, Deputy Chiefs and District Chief (Chiefs), and the firefighters, every effort was made to ensure the information was accurate and comprehensive. The Review is a living document, and as the Municipalities needs and circumstances change, it should be reviewed and adjusted annually.

An Independent Review - Northumberland Municipal Fire Services

© The Loomex Group 2021


Executive Summary

The intention of the Northumberland Municipal Fire Services Review (Review) is to provide the Fire Service Review Steering Committee (Steering Committee) and the Fire Chiefs with recommendations and information to make informed decisions regarding fire and life safety services for the seven Municipalities (Municipalities):

• Township of Alnwick/Haldimand

• Municipality of Brighton

• Town of Cobourg

• Township of Cramahe

• Township of Hamilton

• Municipality of Port Hope

• Municipality of Trent Hills

Each Department provides high-quality service for residents, businesses, and visitors to their Municipalities. Its goal(s) should be to build upon existing strengths, improve efficiencies, and proactively respond to the current and anticipated community needs effectively.

Following a Request for Proposal (RFP) process, the Steering Committee commissioned The Loomex Group to analyze and summarize all fire services and programs provided by the Departments and to examine each Department's core functions. Additionally, The Loomex Group explored opportunities to enhance fire service delivery by working together through partnerships and shared services to help manage future legislative pressures and the increased community demands for service.

There are many factors to consider when planning and undertaking a review that involves multiple departments and communities. Every municipality and fire service across the province has unique differences in socio-economic conditions, population, demographics, building stock, fire service delivery and capabilities, as is the case with the Departments serving the Northumberland County communities.

Emergency services are considered an essential service for the Municipalities, and due to the nature of the service, workers' safety is at higher risk than other service-type occupations. Therefore, it is vital to protect the firefighters (full-time, part-time, and volunteer) by ensuring appropriate and safe equipment and adequate staffing is available 24/7, as required. It is essential to ensure that firefighters are respected, reasonably compensated, and provided with appropriate benefits for their service.

The Review process assessed all aspects of the Departments and examined the possible alignment of services and resources. Opportunities exist to adjust and revise the Departments' structure and share services to improve effectiveness and implement cost efficiencies and cost avoidance.

The Review includes recommendations that stem from a comprehensive analysis of the Departments based on several factors, including but not limited to current legislation, bylaws, agreements, organizational structures, procurement, station coverage areas, and fire prevention and training programs.

With the support and guidance of the Steering Committee, the County of Northumberland Fire Chiefs, Deputy Chiefs and District Chief (Chiefs), and the firefighters, every effort was made to ensure the information was accurate and comprehensive. The Review is a living document, and as the Municipalities needs and circumstances change, it should be reviewed and adjusted annually.

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Page published: 01 March 2021, 08:41