Do Firefighters Have To Choose? - And Response

Tuesday, June 03, 2014

I just read the article on your website regarding “Winners and Losers with New City Budget.”  Upon reaching the end of the article I was forced to take a second look. The statement from the mayor’s chief of staff was that firefighters opted to use the 1.5 percent, the amount needed to repair a broken pay plan, for department use.  

I also read in Sundays Times Free Press about the Chattanooga Fire Department using money to replace old worn out SCBA’s (Self Contained Breathing Apparatus) that the chief stated had been needed and requested three years ago.  

As I began to put the two together I can’t help but be blown away thinking that fire administrators were somehow forced to choose between fixing a broken pay structure (one the city has spend hundreds of thousands of dollars studying over previous years and it still isn’t fixed) and raises for its men and women or purchasing new equipment required to keep them safe in the immediately dangerous to life and health environments that they are faced with on a daily basis. Isn’t this like telling the men and women in blue that you can either have a pay raise or bullets for your gun?

I am really glad to see that the city is stepping up to fix the pay plan for the police officers. It is long overdue and much needed and deserved. If I remember correctly just last July all non sworn city employees received a 1.5 percent raise and firefighters and police officers were left out. Again this year all non sworn city employees are receiving 1.5 percent raises and the firefighters again are left out.  

I would love to see the council members speak out about the firefighters being left out two years in a row in regards to pay raises and not for replacement equipment needed for everyday use. If you can clear up anything I stated or have more information to provide please feel free to reply and discuss.

Mr. Grohn, I am excited to hear your response and greatly appreciate all of your hard work.

Jarred Montieth

Chattanooga Fire Department 

* * *

Once again our mayors have proven of their infinite wisdom. Relax, first responders, I'm sure you all will get one of the now useless expensive "Green Street Lights" that lay in a recently shutdown business for your personal use.  Enjoy. 

The tax money that Chattanooga dishes out for studies in regards to good ole horse sense issues is mind boggling.  

I believe the urgency of ridding the river of that dilapidated barge is largely to the fact, Chattanooga citizens were thinking of making it the new City Hall building.  

Michael Burns


I Know Kenny Smith

I’m writing in response to comments by City Councilman Larry Grohn about Kenny Smith. I don’t know Mr. Grohn, but I know Kenny Smith.  Kenny told me he met Grohn once but doesn’t know him.   If Grohn really knew Kenny Smith, he’d know Kenny pushed for expanded vocational education while on the School Board and is intent on pushing for it on the County Commission. ... (click for more)

Keep Judge Christie Sell On The Bench

Judge Christie Mahn Sell is a local Chattanoogan who has never been anything but a positive and influential leader in our community. I have known Christie most of my life, and I can attest to her integrity and character. Since Christie’s election as the first woman judge to General Sessions Court in 2006, she has focused on improving awareness and education of domestic violence ... (click for more)

EPB Says It Did Not Overbill The City; Says City Got $685,877 Break

EPB officials said Tuesday that an exhaustive audit of its street light contract with the city showed that it did not overbill the city. Instead, it said it found that the city was underbilled $685,877. EPB said it only goes back one year on errors so the amount owed by the city would be $178,314. Officials said that would be discussed with the city. Stan Sewell, the city's ... (click for more)

Citizens To Comment Next Tuesday On Sound Control Ordinance That Allows Higher Sound Around Downtown Clubs

Citizens will be allowed to comment next Tuesday on a new Sound Control Ordinance that allows higher sound from nightclubs in a downtown Controlled Sound Boundary. Track 29 behind the Chattanooga Choo Choo, that has drawn the wrath of some nearby Southside residents, is within the boundary, which goes along the river on the north and west, to around Erlanger Hospital on the ... (click for more)

Vols Open 2018 Season Against West Virginia In Charlotte

KNOXVILLE, Tenn.   – The Charlotte Sports Foundation announced Tuesday that the Tennessee Volunteers will open the 2018 season on September 1 against the West Virginia Mountaineers at Bank of America Stadium in Charlotte, North Carolina, home of the NFL's Carolina Panthers. All information related to kickoff date, time and tickets will be announced at ... (click for more)

Ooltewah's Williams Signs With Northwest Missouri

Ooltewah’s Mike Williams, one of District 5-AAA’s most respected wide receiver threats in 2013, has signed a football scholarship with Northwest Missouri State, the defending NCAA Division II national champion. Williams chose the Bearcats, members of the Mid-America Intercollegiate Athletics Conference, over Carson-Newman, in Jefferson City, Tenn., and Paine College, in Augusta ... (click for more)