Fire Department Swears in New FirefightersNov 12, 2015 01:32PM ● By Scott Bartlett
By Scott Bartlett
Mayor Ted Eyre made public safety a point of emphasis in his most recent budget, with extra money set aside for additional firefighters and police officers. On Aug. 18, three new firefighters were sworn in to Murray’s fire department as part of that public safety emphasis.
Shiloh Lynn Neale joins Murray’s fire department as a firefighter, while Rylan Jordan and Peter Rude join as firefighter/paramedics. Neale’s varied experience includes wildland fire and ski patrol. Jordan comes from Weber County’s fire district, the second person in recent history to follow that route to Murray. Rude comes from Francis, also with a varied background, including ski patrol.
Following the swearing in of the new firefighters, three current members of Murray’s fire department received promotions. Joseph Mittelman was advanced to captain, Chad Pascua was advanced to battalion chief and Mike Dykman was advanced to assistant chief.
Murray fire chief Gil Rodriguez presented each candidate and praised the experience and capabilities each would bring to their new positions.
The new hires are part of Murray’s efforts to return to previous levels of service. In 2006, a change in the sales tax distribution by the state reduced Murray’s share by as much as $3 million per year. The city then offered retirement incentives to help balance its smaller budget. Several safety officers took advantage of those incentives, and had not been replaced to date.
In an effort to replace those safety officers who retired, the city council recently passed a 0.2 percent local sales tax. That tax was authorized by legislation passed in 2008, and will go into effect on Oct. 1. The city will also hire police officers with the additional funds.
In his May budget presentation to the city council, Mayor Eyre stated that the city’s primary responsibility is to provide services to its residents. These new firefighters are one way the city is working to make the best use of its funds to meet that responsibility.