According to members of the Board, the decision to reallocate resources from Station #13 was based on a public safety report.
Gillian Smith, Patch Staff
Posted Friday, February 12, 2021
GLENVIEW, IL – The Village of Glenview Board last week unanimously directed village staff to realign existing resources from Fire Station #13 to the four other village stations, despite concerns from the local firefighter’s union. In 2019, the Board of Trustees began a review process to consider options for better aligning village services with the demands of the community. The review process included input from village firefighters, lieutenants, battalion chiefs and department leadership, according to village officials.
According to members of the Board, the decision at the Feb. 2 meeting to reallocate resources from Station #13 was based on safety, fiduciary responsibility and utilization data, and will provide more efficiency for serving the community.
Despite the reallocating of resources, the number of fire and EMS personnel will not change. In a release on Feb. 7, the Glenview Firefighters Local 4186 union expressed its concern with the changes, including increased response times to emergencies on the east side of the village. “The Glenview Firefighters Local 4186 stands against this decision,” the union said in a statement. “We know that the closure of Fire Station 13 will compromise emergency services to the entire village, especially the East side of Glenview. We will not support this reduction in service.” The union has created a new section on its website with information about Station #13, encouraging village residents to reach out to the Board of Trustees with their concerns.
In a study presented to the board in September, public safety consultants found that medical calls make up the majority of community demand in the village. The consultants used the report to make several recommendations for better alignment of resources within the village.
On Tuesday, the Board released a reorganization plan for reallocating resources from Fire Station #13. In the plan, the number of emergency personnel remains unchanged and the number of ambulance teams increases from two to four, providing 24-hour service. “The plan also aims to make the department more versatile, provide relief to other ambulance crews in Glenview and improve overall service for the safety of the community,” the Board said in a release Tuesday.
Fire Chief Tony DeRose said the reorganization will not result in layoffs and the current number of officers per shift will remain the same. During the coronavirus pandemic, resources for Fire Station #13 were temporarily reallocated to other stations for 15 weeks in 2020 and for four weeks in 2021, and villages officials said public safety was “not adversely affected.”
In addition to reallocating resources, the Board has recommended the fire department pursue long-term collaboration opportunities with surrounding regional fire departments and provide regular updates on the progress of implementing the new operational structure.