Geoffrey Gardella — Candidate for the Arvada Fire Protection District Board


Geoffrey Gardella — Candidate for the Arvada Fire Protection District Board

7002 Grandview Avenue, Arvada, CO 80002
gardella@anonyx.org
gardella@gmail.com /application
303-731-7494
720-933-4420 /application
http://www.gardellaforarvada.org/

 

Geoffrey Gardella

Geoffrey Gardella

1. Why are you running for the fire board?

I love Arvada, and believe our community is leading the way in defining the suburban community of the 21st century . I am looking for a way to be involved with and give back to this city. I hope to be a community voice on the board.

2. What skills do you bring that will help you govern the Arvada Fire District effectively?

I see my role on the board as trying to help the professionals on the force to implement their vision for the District in a fiscally responsible way. I am a team player, and would look to work together with other board members, the chief and firefighters to keep the District strong and responsive to the community’s needs.

3. What are the biggest challenges you see facing the Arvada Fire District?

The development at Candelas in the North-West will necessitate the building and staffing of a new station. That will mean growing the force by more than 10%. The district was forward-looking by securing the tax revenue for this, and now the work remains to begin the development process.

The district is working with the police department on an active-shooter response program, to bring rescue personnel in to assist shooting victims sooner. Arvada’s initiatives are at the cutting edge of response programs for this type of emergency. Some might say that they are “writing the book” on this subject

Currently the district does not extend into the part of Arvada which falls in Adams County. One of the biggest decisions in the coming years will be whether or not to absorb this area into the district, and how to implement such a change.

4. How does the configuration of Ralston Road impact the level of service that the Arvada Fire District can provide?

Arvada is changing rapidly, and this will affect the traffic patterns on numerous arterial roads in the city. I am not a traffic engineer, and would need more information to answer this question.

5. Do you think that the benefits to the community out weighs the costs of having our own ambulance service.

If so please explain the trade-off between the added cost and new services being provided.

If not how will you approach liquidating the Ambulances that were purchased and reducing the Arvada Fire District staff?

Yes, I strongly support the District’s choice to take over emergency transport. The department just celebrated one year of providing this service to the citizens of the district. It is paying for itself, so will not be an added cost for tax payers. I personally, would rather put my life in the hands of an Arvada career EMS team, than a for-profit company.

6. Did you support the last ballot measure that would have removed term limits for Arvada Fire Board Members?

I did not support this measure. I think it is vital to public boards that new perspectives are brought in on occasion.

7. Did you support the 55% mill-levy increase in 2010?

Yes, I support the current mill-levy. The district has needed more money to respond to the rapid changes that are coming to Arvada. With the advent of a professional force, and the growth of the district, there has been lots to do. Specifically, I think the new maintenance and training facilities were needed (the old burn building could no longer be used for active burning). Nobody enjoys paying taxes.

[Editor's note:  The CLRC received a note from Mr Gardella saying that he had submitted a response to the CLRC steering committee's questions before the Friday deadline, but his email service provider had not been sending out all of his emails.  Hence the reason for this late posting.  --JK]

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Arvada City Council Meeting of April 14th — Notes of Note


by John Kiljan

[updated April 15, 2014 3:45 pm]

Dear CLRC members and friends,

Personnel changes, housing density and traffic signals peppered this workshop meeting of the City Council, but mostly it was about management performance goals and a progress report on revising the City’s Comprehensive Plan — not very exciting stuff. Here are a few things I picked up during the meeting that I thought were interesting:

Long-time City employee, Michele Hovet, is resigning to take on a new job with the German software giant, SAP.  Michele’s duties will be nationwide but she will still be able to work from her Wheat Ridge home.  She has been with the City for nearly 20 years and has held her current position as Deputy City Manager for the last two years.  The second Deputy City Manager position she held was created as a part of a staff reorganization by City Manager Mark Deven after City Manager Craig Kocian retired.  Mr Deven is expected to fill the vacancy with a new hire.

MicheleHovet

Michele Hovet

Retiring employees were brought up several times. The City has an experienced — but aging — staff. Many of them will soon be eligible for retirement. And these pending retirements are creating a number of continuity problems for City management.

Also, starting soon at her new job will be public relations officer Maria VanderKolk. One of her first assignments may be to “re-brand” the City. That may mean changing the City’s long-time logos — and, possibly, even its street signs.

Comments are already coming in on the new flashing yellow-arrow signal heads. The City is enthusiastic about their safety benefits, but some staff and Council members are getting a hard time from the public. City Manager Mark Deven quipped that anyone who has served as an Arvada City traffic engineer should be nominated for sainthood. Not that there is a shortage of traffic experts — apparently Arvada has a large number of traffic experts. At last count, he said, we seemed to have over 100,000 of them. Arvada’s population count is a little over 100,000.

A long list of meetings are yet to come in revising the City’s Comprehensive Plan before a draft is available for public review and final adoption. But tonight the concerns by Councilor Dyer were about housing density along Indiana Street from 64th up to Candelas. The recommendations to increase housing density along that corridor go against earlier plans to keep this part of Arvada as low density to preserve the western part of the City’s rural feel. Councilors Allard and Dyer described this as a significant planning change and wanted to see more thought go into that recommendation before it became part of the revised plan.

Council members were told that Indiana would not be widened to four-lanes because it was a state highway. But Bob Fifer and others said it would have to be widened eventually. Councilor Fifer wondered if that could be done before the Jefferson Parkway went in so that the road was not in competition with the new parkway. As far as I know, there have been no public discussions on the non-compete provisions to be included in the new parkway’s development agreements.

Councilor McGoff wanted to see more emphasis in the comp plan in connecting Arvada’s most pedestrian-accessible areas. There is a new map of those designated areas in a draft documents that was not included in the Council packet available online. I’ve asked the consultant for a copy and will post it here if I can get the copy.

[Update:  The Pedestrian Activity Centers graphic was received the next morning and is posted here.  Click to enlarge the picture.  Notably, the graphic does not show any missing sidewalks on Ralston Road from Olde Town to the Triangle.  Hopefully that will be corrected in the final comp plan.]

Pedestrian Activity Centers -- Comp Plan Draft

Pedestrian Activity Centers — Comp Plan Draft

The central Ralston Road corridor between the Triangle and Olde Town was designated to emphasize its potential for multiple uses — including multistory apartment blocks along the road. What was debunked, however, were rumors that the City was planning to rezone swaths of land along 57th and other parallel streets such as Grandview to allow for higher-density housing. That’s not in the City’s plans and it will not be in the revised Comprehensive Plan.

The parks department wants to change its name to emphasize its growing convention-hosting performance goals. Director of Parks, Golf and Hospitality, Gordon Reusink, said that Arvada is facing a shortage of hospitality space, and events such as weddings and conventions are already being turned away because of a lack of available facilities in Arvada. The West Woods golf clubhouse needs to be rebuilt — not because it can’t meet the needs of golfers, but because the building is being put to uses it was never intended for — such as weddings, large meetings and having a nice restaurant to support other gatherings. It’s popular enough for these events that parking sometimes spills over into adjacent neighborhoods.

And, as many of our readers know, as a part of the change in its governance, the Arvada Center at 68th and Wadsworth will be taking over the available ballroom space inside the Arvada Center. That will add to the City’s hospitality shortage. The Council will hold off on any name changes for the parks department until its plans for golf and hospitality are better defined.

District 3 Councilor John Marriott was on vacation and there was no discussion about the future location of the Courts or police station during this workshop, as had been planned earlier.

John Kiljan

CLRC Secretary
6185 Field Street
Arvada, CO 80004

303-423-9875
jpkiljan@yahoo.com

April 14, 2014

The Citizens for a Livable Ralston Community is an independent neighborhood association.

[ACCMtg14Apl14Notes.doc]

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Fire Board and Apex Board Question Responses


Fire Board and Apex Board Question Responses
by John Kiljan

[Updated:  April 15, 2014]
[Updated:  April 17, 2014]

Dear CLRC members and friends,

AFPD Engine

AFPD Engine

Recently posted on our http://www.RalstonCommunity.org website are the answers to the question put to the candidates for both the Arvada Fire Protection District Board and for the Apex Parks and Recreation District Board of Directors. The questions were put together by the members of the CLRC’s steering committee. Each response to our request is posted individually.

If you are an iContact follower of the CLRC, you are getting this email instead of the clutter of [eleven] separate emails showing up in your inbox at one time. Listed below is a “short URL” for each posting. You can click on any of those to see the full posting of the candidate’s response.

Apex indoor soccer

Apex indoor soccer

In all, [ten] candidates out of the 15 running for the boards of these special districts responded to our questionnaires.

Who to vote for? Sorry, you have to figure that out for yourself. The CLRC does not endorse candidates for public office. Members or friends are welcome to post their comments (as endorsements or as anything else) on our CLRC Facebook page or on our http://www.RalstonCommunity.org website.

Here are the short URL’s for each candidate’s response for the Arvada Fire Protection District Board:

hineserWilliam Hineser

http://wp.me/p1ecMV-lK

 

MKramerCroppedMatt Kramer

http://wp.me/p1ecMV-lx

 

TMarksCroppedTom Marks

http://wp.me/p1ecMV-m5

 

JVanEsCropJeff Van Es

http://wp.me/p1ecMV-mc

 

RWeisfieldCroppedRussell Weisfield

http://wp.me/p1ecMV-lC

 

BWilsonCroppedBob Wilson

http://wp.me/p1ecMV-m0

 

GGardellaGeoffrey Gardella

http://wp.me/p1ecMV-mH

[Update:  added link for a late post]

Candidates Steve Legault, Bob Loveridge and Don Taylor did not respond to our requests.

Here are the short URL’s for each candidate’s response for the Apex Park and Recreation Board:

KHaackCroppedKen Haack

http://wp.me/p1ecMV-mk

 

tommy-skul-headshotTommy Skul

http://wp.me/p1ecMV-lk

 

jim-whitfield-for-apex-board-of-directorsJim Whitfield

http://wp.me/p1ecMV-l6

 

Candidates Ken Harrell and Kristen Larington did not respond to our requests.

[Update:  The Denver Post’s YourHub local news service also put questionnaires to the candidates for both the Fire Board and Apex Board as well. You can read the candidate’s responses to those (different) questions at these links. The Chamber of Commerce also had its own questionnaire, but I have not bee able to find a link to it online. It might be for members only.

http://yourhub.denverpost.com/apex-park-and-recreation-district-2014-election-roundup/

http://yourhub.denverpost.com/arvada-fire-protection-district-2014-election-roundup/

[

Apex and the AFPD boards have openings for three appointments each, so you will be able to vote for more than one candidate in this election.

The elections for both special districts are being held Tuesday, May 6, 2014 at three walk-in locations in Arvada, or you can request an absentee ballot for mail-in voting before then. These organizations are not a part of the City of Arvada and this is not an election coordinated by Jefferson County or anyone else. So even if you have received mail-in ballots in the past, you will NOT receive mail-in ballots for these elections unless you first ask each special district for one.

John Kiljan
Secretary for the Citizens for a Livable Ralston Community
6185 Field Street
Arvada, CO 80004

jpkiljan@yahoo.com
303-423-9875

The Citizens for a Livable Ralston Community is an independent neighborhood association.

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Bill Hineser, DPM — Candidate for the Arvada Fire Protection District Board


Bill Hineser, DPM — Candidate for the Arvada Fire Protection District Board

11780 W 66th Pl, Arvada, CO 80004
wfhineser@qwestoffice.net
303-425-5826

Bill Hineser

Bill Hineser

1.Why are you running for the fire board?

See answer #3 below.

2. What skills do you bring that will help you govern the Arvada Fire District effectively?

AS 76% of the calls the department answers are medical I feel my experience as a podiatric physician (foot and ankle surgeon) will add a layer of expertise the board does not currently have. I bring a perspective that includes not only a knowledge of medicine, but a knowledge of HIPPA, OSHA, Medicare, Medicaid, medical billing and other aspects that will help us make better decisions in these areas.

As a past president of our State Podiatric Medical Association, 3 term member of the Colorado Board of Medical Examiners, 10 year consultant to Medicare, former president of a hospital Independent Physicians Association, and Chief of my department at 3 hospitals I bring both medical knowledge and managerial skills.

Also I have had a securities license, and insurance license which I obtained for my own education.

I have also spent several terms as president of my homeowners association which I feel is one of the most responsive and fair associations in the area.

3. What are the biggest challenges you see facing the Arvada Fire District?

See answer to question #6 below.

4. How does the configuration of Ralston Road impact the level of service that the Arvada Fire District can provide?

I don’t know how this configuration got approved but it is an accident waiting to happen. At this point changing the configuration would be a massive undertaking. I would be in favor of plans to eventually change parts of this road.

5.  Do you think that the benefits to the community out weighs the costs of having our own ambulance service.

See question #3 below for more information as well.

Initially I was against providing a service that was already handled by private business. But I personally had problems with Pride Mark and the subsequent companies that purchased them. I felt they had some poor billing practices which were harming seniors (one of the main users of the service) and the relationship with the hospitals was predatory.

I was able to get the ambulance policy changed at Lutheran Hospital saving citizens thousands of dollars a year by better utilization of the services to return patients to their homes.

Currently the ambulance service of the AFD is making money for the city and department. Policies are being established to save citizens money on the services while still making a profit. We will need to work with Medicare/Caid to be certain we do not violate National and State Laws while doing this.

If so, please explain the trade-off between the added cost and new services being provided.

Currently the service is not an added cost.

If not, how will you approach liquidating the Ambulances that were purchased and reducing the Arvada Fire District staff?

As the service is operating at a profit I would not consider liquidating it at this time.

However we now have potentially bigger problem as the department contemplates getting into Community Medicine to provide home services after an ambulance visit. This could be a real can of worms for us regarding billing and follow-up of patients.

6. Did you support the last ballot measure that would have removed term limits for Arvada Fire Board Members?

 No, I am a firm believer in term limits. 8 years on the board is sufficient to have an impact on the function of the department and provide input. This can be a double edged sword when you have a very productive member. But the benefits outweigh the deficits in these situations. By staggering the terms we do retain the institutional memory that is important to long term function of the board.

7. Did you support the 55% mill-levy increase in 2010? Members?

Initially I did not support the mill levy. However after visiting every fire station and facility that the AFD has I am impressed with what has been done with the money and how well it has been spent. The equipment, high level personnel, availability to the public and excellent service and protection have proven this to be a good use of our money and resources.

* * *

Answers to questions for Chamber Arvada of Commerce

1.     Your Name: William (Bill) Hineser

2.     Current Employment, Activities, Board Seats, Community Involvement (Please just least organizations/companies, not detailed information on roles, etc.): 

I am currently retired from the practice of Podiatric Medicine. I practiced here in Arvada and the west side of Jefferson County for over 42 years as a board certified Foot and Ankle Surgeon.

I am on the board of directors of the Colorado Foot and Ankle Society and have served as president in the past.  I also served 3 terms of the Board of Medical Examiners.  I am currently president of my homeowners association. 

During the Harvest Festival I am one of the announcers along the parade route. 

Past member of local Optimist Club, Current member Arvada Elks Club and past trustee.  

3.     Why are you interested in serving on the Arvada Fire District Board? (LIMITED TO 150 WORDS OR LESS):

I became especially interested in the fire department during the time they were establishing the ambulance service. I was unhappy with the business practices of Pridemark and the way patient transfers were handled from the hospital. As a result I was able to get the ambulance policy changed at Lutheran Hospital.

After that experience I became interested in the activities of the Department and the services provided. I have gotten to know board members and toured the department facilities. Police and Fire are two the most integrated services in our community and I feel we have one of the best Fire Departments in the country.

As 76% of the fire department calls are medical I feel my medical experience will be very valuable to the board and the department. Currently there are no other members of the board or persons seeking the position with physician experience.

Though I have always been interested and involve since I retired I have found that I have a lot more time to become involved in the community and community activities and now I am able to pursue them more fully.

4.     What do you hope to accomplish during your time on the Board? (LIMITED TO 150 WORDS OR LESS):

First I intend to see that the high quality of service and standards of the department are maintained and continually improved. The department may move into community medicine and I intend to see that this is properly done, if implemented.

The department has started an outreach program to independent and assisted living facilities and I would like to see this expanded. Also, community education increased to cut down on the number of service calls that could have been avoided.

There is work to be done with builders in communities that are expanding, and which will require service, where financial support must be obtained to support expansion of the department.

I would like to see the police and fire department fully integrated to work together in situations where there are wounded needing attention when under fire.

Continue the path of excellence the department has shown.

5.     What impacts do you think you can make on the business community through this role? (LIMITED TO 150 WORDS OR LESS): 

The biggest impact the department has on the business community is safety. As our community expands and changes it is important that the department stay current with all development in order to enable these services to be promptly delivered.

By maintaining a top notch department we can use this as a selling point to entice business into the city.

The department needs to be user friendly when working with businesses on compliance with fire codes.

Most importantly I intend to see good stewardship of tax dollars. The $23 million plus budget and $1.2 billion dollar net worth of the department is a serious responsibility.

6.     What do you see as the top three challenges facing the district in the next 5 years? (LIMITED TO 150 WORDS OR LESS)

The top challenge will be expansion into the new communities.  This has to be handled very carefully and with the support of the builders of these communities.

Next it is important to maintain full staffing of emergency vehicles, especially during any expansion. Currently the trucks and engines have four personnel, and this should be maintained. Other communities have had to cut back the number of persons supporting their vehicles and this can create dangerous situations.

Third the department has limited funds and they must be carefully controlled by making good decisions regarding any spending and expansion. Maintaining top of the line personnel and equipment are critical.

If the expansion to community medicine is made it must be done in the same cost effective way the ambulance service was incorporated.

7.     Please attach a current photo of yourself to use in the email-

It is attached.

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Matt Kramer — Candidate for the Arvada Fire Protection District Board


Matt Kramer — Candidate for the Arvada Fire Protection District Board

8525 E. Orchard Road, 5T3, Greenwood Village, CO 80111
matt.kramer@greatwest.com
(303) 324-7345/cell
www.greatwest.com

1.     Why are you running for the fire board?

Matt Kramer

Matt Kramer

I am interested in re-election to the Arvada Fire Protection District Board to help complete and continue the initiatives we have began over the last four years, as well as to keep moving the District forward in a fiscally responsible way, to ensure the best fire/rescue service is provided to the citizens of the District

2.     What skills do you bring that will help you govern the Arvada Fire District effectively?

I have been a Board Director for the past four years, and have been the Treasurer for the last two years.   I am a retired Arvada volunteer firefighter with 18 years of service.  My firefighting career has spanned positions from firefighter, to nine years as Assistant Chief, including several years as Training Chief.

3.     What are the biggest challenges you see facing the Arvada Fire District?

Growth in the northwest part of the district.  There simply is not enough revenue generated by that area during the early stages to fund the addition of a station when needed.  The district is working very diligently with the developer to seek ways to close the gap between revenue and costs for service in the area.

4.     How does the configuration of Ralston Road impact the level of service that the Arvada Fire District can provide?

The code that the City adopted has restrictions on width and access for emergency services and the Fire District has always worked with the City to make sure that our concerns are considered before the final design is adopted.  We do not anticipate any access problems or any negative impact on the level of service we provide.

5. Do you think that the benefits to the community out weighs the costs of having our own ambulance service. 

If so please explain the trade-off between the added cost and new services being provided.

If not how will you approach liquidating the Ambulances that were purchased and reducing the Arvada Fire District staff?

There is no added cost.  The cost that our citizens are paying is the same as when Rural Metro provided the service.  In fact, the service is functioning in the black and the amount that is received above the costs will go to reimburse the reserve fund for costs associated with the start of the service. 

Another benefit is that the profits go back to provision of services in Arvada.  In other words, we added 8 firefighters per shift at no cost to our citizens.  Rural Metro, who purchased Pridemark a few years ago, is headquartered in Arizona.  That is where the profits went when they provided the service.   

Also we now have all paramedics under the same advising physician and training program.  This was not the case before.  This now means that the crews integrate in training and all daily activities which provides a more seamless provision of care on emergencies.

The Fire District also gives benefits that Rural Metro did not.  For example, if we treat and release patients without transport, there is no cost. In the past Rural Metro charged for this.

6.     Did you support the last ballot measure that would have removed term limits for Arvada Fire Board Members?

Yes I did.  For the prior two District election cycles we did not have to have an election because we only had the exact number of candidates running that there were open positions for.  It seemed as though there was not much interest in being on the Arvada Fire Protection District Board.  The two Directors that are term limited this year, and are having to step down, are great persons and have served the Fire District and the Community with all they have, and I felt if others did not have interest in running for the Fire Board, then it would be good to allow these two men to run again and continue serving the Community in the job that they love.  In hindsight, this was unnecessary, as this election cycle we have 10 persons running for 3 open positions, which I think is great, because it shows that we do have interest in being on the Arvada Fire District Board.

7.     Did you support the 55% mill-levy increase in 2010?

Yes I did.   At the time, and with the reduced revenue we were receiving from property taxes, if we had not increased the mill-levy, we would have had to reduce staff and shut down fire stations.  This was not a threat, it was a reality.  Also, before the mill-levy increase, we were only able to staff each fire truck with three firefighters, which was below what National Fire Guidelines require, which is four firefighters per fire truck.  Having only three firefighters per fire truck, was a safety issue, not only for the firefighters responding to the incident, but for the citizens we were trying to serve/rescue.  I want to maintain the current mill-levy and ensure adequate budget reserves so we do not have to approach the citizens for a higher mill-levy for many, many years, if ever.    

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Tom “T-Bone” Marks — Candidate for the Arvada Fire Protection District Board


Tom “T-Bone” Marks — Candidate for the Arvada Fire Protection District Board

16181 W 74th Ave, Arvada, CO 80007
tmarks@CustomSvcs.com
303-356-7400
303-423-9949/work

Tom "T-Bone" Marks

Tom “T-Bone” Marks

Thank you for your interest in the Fire Board election and the chance to address the CLRC. Attached are my responses and a picture. If you need anything else or have questions please contact me. Be Safe, and thanks again.

Tom “T-Bone” Marks

TomMarksResponse

[Editor's note: Mr Marks provided his responses in a PDF format. Our website service, WordPress, does not display PDF files directly. Instead, it provides a link to download the file for viewing on a separate screen. That link is shown here. Also, since the original survey questions were not included in the response, we have copied them again here for easy reference by our readers. --JK]

1. Why are you running for the fire board?

2. What skills do you bring that will help you govern the Arvada Fire District effectively?

3. What are the biggest challenges you see facing the Arvada Fire District?

4. How does the configuration of Ralston Road impact the level of service that the Arvada Fire District can provide?

5. Do you think that the benefits to the community out weighs the costs of having our own ambulance service.

If so please explain the trade-off between the added cost and new services being provided.

If not how will you approach liquidating the Ambulances that were purchased and reducing the Arvada Fire District staff?

6. Did you support the last ballot measure that would have removed term limits for Arvada Fire Board Members?

7. Did you support the 55% mill-levy increase in 2010?

 

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Jeff Van Es — Candidate for the Arvada Fire Protection District Board


Jeff Van Es — Candidate for the Arvada Fire Protection District Board

17101 W 64th Dr, Arvada, CO 80007
303-421-6563
jvanes802@gmail.com

Why are you running for the fire board?

Jeff Van Es

Jeff Van Es

I was raised in a family of volunteer firefighters that spans a combined eight decades of service. Having a strong desire to continue this tradition, I volunteered as a firefighter upon moving to Arvada. Following my years of service as a volunteer firefighter, I continued my involvement in the community by providing construction expertise to the AFPD on their construction projects. I value the part every resident of Arvada plays in the continued betterment of the community in which they reside, and wish to bring my experience and dedication to causes related to the growth and betterment of Arvada as a whole. Serving on the Arvada Fire District Board provides me an opportunity to continue to serve Arvada in a manner that affects every citizen within the AFPD boundaries, strengthening the ties that unite us as a community.

What skills do you bring that will help you govern the Arvada Fire District?

I have worked in the commercial construction industry in Colorado for the past 20 years. During that time I have managed construction projects ranging from $1 million to $120 million. This leadership experience will be an asset in helping the AFPD maintain its fiscal responsibility to the citizens it serves, while offering insight to navigating projects and issues in the future.

My firefighter background gives me the insight necessary to understand the needs within the department as they relate to providing the highest level of service to its residents. Having been on emergency calls, I understand the demands and extensive support it takes to safely respond to emergencies.

The AFPD has been providing superior service to its citizens over the years. As a board member, I hope to help the department in continuing this high level of dedication, while being an integral component in growing the level of excellence to the residents of the district.

What are the biggest challenges you see facing the Arvada Fire District?

The biggest challenges I see facing the District are as follows:

  1. Growth of the Candelas area in the Northwest portion of the city. This area is growing quickly, and response times for the nearest fire station are lengthy. In 2016 the development is expected to exceed 1,000 homes, making the need for a new fire station a necessity in order to support this area’s growth. The addition of fire stations, equipment and adequate staffing will directly relate to budget concerns, as revenue generated by this area may not adequately fund these needs.
  2. Integrated Community Medicine (Paramedicine). This concept has already been implemented in other metro fire departments and will be coming to Arvada. This specialized theory of service needs to be further evaluated in order to determine opportunities the AFPD has to enhance their services, while further supplementing transport that started a year ago.
  3. Volunteer/reserve firefighter system. Expansion and growth of the department and its services has changed the benefits of the volunteer/reserve system. This is a great tradition in which this fire department was founded, but risk versus benefit in an ever-changing service industry requires an open-minded evaluation of the system as a whole.
  4. Future strains on the AFPD need to be addressed as it relates to an increasing demand for emergency medical services due to an aging population, and people using the 911 system for healthcare due to the lack and/or inefficiency of insurance.

How does the configuration of Ralston Road impact the level of service that the Arvada Fire District can provide?

The Arvada Fire Protection District needs to work closely with the City on the development process of the area. The City has adopted codes that require certain width and access guidelines for emergency services. Prior to approval of final design, AFPD will be involved to ensure considerations for emergency services will not be compromised. I would not anticipate any negative impacts to the services provided by the AFPD.

Do you think the benefits to the community outweighs the costs of having our own ambulance service? If so, please explain the trade-off between the added cost and new services being provided. If not how will you approach liquidating the Ambulances that were purchased and reducing the Arvada Fire District staff?

I support the decision of the current Board of Directors to add the provision of ambulance transport assistance to the list of services provided by the AFPD for the following reasons:

  1. Citizens are paying the same, if not slightly less, than they did previously for ambulance service provided through Rural Metro. Being government provided, ambulance service is now made available on a non-profit basis versus the previous contract method, which provided profits to an out of state company. After its first year of service, ambulance transport by AFPD is self-sustaining and any funds received in excess of operating costs will be used to pay back reserves used during the initial start up of the service. Additionally, if the AFPD responds to, treats and subsequently releases the patient without transport, the patient does not pay for the service. The assistance provided by Rural Metro entailed a service charge regardless of the need for transport.
  2. Consistency in training AFPD personnel is the key to safely providing seamless care to the citizens they serve. Now that the ambulance service is provided by the AFPD, both the paramedic/EMT teams and the fire fighter teams are working under the same medical director. This was not the case when ambulance services were provided by a contract provider, at times resulting in direction-related conflicts. By adding ambulances to the AFPD service fleet, the necessity of the engines and trucks to respond to every single call has been reduced. By minimizing the use of these apparatus on EMS calls, AFPD has reduced staff costs and unnecessary wear and tear on its vehicles.

Did you support the last ballot measure that would have removed term limits for Arvada Fire Board Members?

No

Did you support the 55% mill-levy increase in 2010?

I supported the mill-levy increase in 2010 so that the citizens of the community would continue to experience the level of service they deserve and expect.

The recession brought a significant decline in property values, which caused loss of revenue to the District. The costs to sustain the services of the District did not decline with the loss of revenue, which would have necessitated a subsequent reduction in services.

The staffing levels for response apparatus was below the standard intended by NFPA 1710. For firefighters to work safely and effectively, four personnel need to be staffed on an engine or truck. When I was in service with AFPD, we responded with three firefighters per apparatus. This delayed our time for entering a structure, potentially compromising the safety of the firefighters while performing their duties and potential occupants of the structure.

As a concerned citizen of Arvada, I supported this mill-levy increase. As with most people, I expect prompt responses to emergency calls and highly-trained personnel caring for my family in their time of need. Emergency service is something we never want to experience, but when we need it we expect “the best”. I am compelled to ensure that all citizens get “the best” from the women and men of the AFPD who respond in their time of need.

For more information regarding the mill-levy increase, review the report and recommendations provided by the Blue Ribbon Advisory Panel to the Arvada Fire Department.

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Requested biographical addition:

Jeff has lived in Arvada for the past 17 years. He is married and has a daughter, who are both active in the community.

Jeff served 8 years as a volunteer firefighter for the Arvada Fire ProtectionDistrict. After his resignation as a volunteer, he continued his involvement in the department by volunteering his time and experience during the construction of the new fire stations and station remodels, in which he received a Certificate of Excellence from the Arvada Fire Protection District in recognition of his efforts, leadership and inspiration with the construction of the AFPD’s new fire stations, in 2007. He has also volunteered his time teaching the AFPD Building Construction Class for multiple Fire Academies.

He has worked in the commercial construction setting in Colorado since graduating from Iowa State University in 1993. He serves on the Building and Grounds Committee for his daughter’s school, and is Vice President of his neighborhood HOA Board.

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