Parkman Fire Department Proposed Future

In 2014 our fire department was 100% volunteer with 25 people on the roster that responded to calls when they were available. The biggest drawback to this is someone was not always available and the roster was diminishing due to age and death. The 2nd drawback was it took sometimes 10 minutes or more to get someone to respond. We started a stipend plan as an enticement and reimbursement for the time and expense of fuel etc. That helped somewhat but it still took time to get someone to respond and the roster was still declining. This was not a problem that is only in Parkman this is a nationwide crisis. People are less available, many travel an hour or more to get to their jobs. This leaves less time to volunteer.

So in June of 2015 we started staffing during the daytime hours which most people are working. We started with 8 hour shifts 5 days a week. To track our success we started tracking all kinds of data, how long it took to respond, how many calls were answered by staff and by volunteer etc. Response times reduced greatly with most staff responses in less than 1 minute, more calls were being answered and we seemed to have good progress. Still there were many calls not being responded to by Parkman in the off hours, thus the longer response time was still prevalent in the non-staff hours. We increased to 7 days then to 12 hours and then to 15 hours of coverage to relieve some of the problem. Each increase in hours has covered more calls in less time but we still have 9 hours each day 7 days a week that are not covered. That is 63 hours a week or 3276 hours each year not staffed. We also have a 40 year old station that was designed to house equipment for volunteers not to house people for any length of time.

Therefore our current situation is this, we should really staff 24 hours a day 7 days a week to insure that someone is available whenever a need might present itself. To accomplish this we need a place for those people to stay. That space should be clear of anything that might be harmful to those we want to help us. To accomplish this we feel the minimum plan of building a bunkhouse/office is the least expensive route. We currently have 14 staff members on our roster and a few those who have more places to be than time to be there. To cover 24/7 with a minimum of 2 people is 17520 man-hours of coverage. To do that with part time employees you would need a minimum of 12 people that were available every minute of the exact hours you need them and dedicated to cover all those hours. Realistically you need a least 24 to make sure you have coverage. You also would need 24 sets of gear and space to maintain that etc. We currently have 7 paramedics on our roster, if we hire 3 of those as full-time employees that would cover 7488 hours and we have a paramedic available every day all day long. We can then cover the remaining 10032 man-hours with the other 11 people more easily than trying to cover all 17520 hours. This also provides some consistency and security for those staffing and could give someone a reason to live closer to Parkman.

This is the least expensive plan with the most stability.

This will require passage of a minimum of a 5 mil levy which is $175.00 per $100,000.00 of tax evaluation. Tax evaluation is approximately 35% of the market value of your property.
Therefore if you have a $150,000.00 property the tax value is $52,500.00 and the tax would be $91.88 per year.

March 17, 2020 is Election Day there will be a 5 mil Levy on the Ballot, if it passes we will construct a bunkhouse/office. Hopefully by June 1, 2020 we will begin 24 hour shifts. If levy does not pass we will have to re-evaluate and might have to cut back to 12 hour shifts to remain within current budget.

Please come to a meeting
to tell us your concerns and ideas.


We are open for any question
and will try to answer and explain in detail all those asked.