May 2017 KSFFA Presidents Article

Hello Kansas Fire Service. I would like to take the time to publicly thank the Riley County Fire Department crew for hosting a great conference this year. Good venue and a great agenda full of excellent speakers and training topics. They rose to the challenge of adding more training pieces and brought in several excellent speakers on relevant fire service topics. At this year’s conference, the current Executive Board was retained. We all truly appreciate your support and trust to keep leading the Kansas Fire Service in the right direction. We can only do this with your input and comment. Feel free to contact any of the executive board members with comments or concerns that we can assist you with.
Well, it’s been two years since I was honored to receive your support to become President of this great Association. It has been quite an interesting ride. Many issues arose in the legislature this past year that were of interest to the fire service. Retirement issues and health issues lead the way. We were proud to support the bill that lead to the signing of the Interstate Fire Compact Bill to assist our Forestry Department with gaining needed assets during a wildfire. As seen by this year’s outbreaks, it’s not just a once in a career thing to see a large fast moving wildfire. On one day alone, there were twenty counties with large fires exceeding 500 acres burning in them. Several of those fires exceeded 5000 acres. The compact bill will hopefully allow for expedited resource requests in the future. Volunteers serving on elected boards was also clarified by the legislature. This will allow many of you to continue to serve on elected boards without fear of conflict or challenge in doing so. This will let our public servants who offer to serve, continue to do so in many of our communities.

On the topic of those wildfires, I should mention that the KSFFA participated in a meeting in late March hosted by the State Fire Marshal about the response to the wildfires of the early part of March. It is agreed across the fire service that the response could have been better coordinated and timelier. The outcome of that meeting was to reconvene the Fire Service Working Group under the CEPR to explore what can be done to improve our response in the future. KSFFA has a seat on this committee and is looking for input from our members on ideas or concerns you may have with how this year’s responses went. Please send your input to me in an email. I ask that you express your concerns, but also provide a solution to that concern or a direction you feel would address it. We are committed to working with all of our response partners across the state to build a better system and deliver that education out to the fire service of Kansas.
I leave you with the same challenge of last year. That is to attend one of our regional schools. Attend and bring a friend who has never attended before. Lastly, register to host a school. We look forward to selecting schools for 2018 in August. Application can be made online at http://www.ksffa.com and we will select locations at our August board meeting. As always, stay safe and make sure to bring everyone home!

Kevin Flory, KSFFA President

 

 

Posted by Gwen Dorr Romine, KSFFA Webmaster
http://www.ksffa.com
KSFFA’s Fire News Blog Home Page

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