Do Firefighters Have To Choose? - And Response

Tuesday, June 3, 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


Gays Get 7 Percent Marriage Licenses In Hamilton County, 2 Percent Elsewhere - And Response

More than a hundred people in a homosexual relationship have received marriage licenses from Hamilton County clerk Bill Knowles.  The licenses were issued from June 26 through Feb. 3, according to a county spreadsheet.  The rush to homosexual nuptials was the U.S. supreme court’s publication of the Obergefell v. Hodges opinion, which is generally said to have ... (click for more)

Vouchers Are Not The Solution

Although the Republican legislators who represent Hamilton County are not willing to fully fund the BEP 2.0, they have endorsed sending thousands of your and my tax dollars to private schools. The voucher bill (HB1049) provides the promise of a private school education to students currently enrolled in low-performing schools.   Vouchers may provide financial resources; however, ... (click for more)

Hamilton County Principals Say Part 1 Of TN Ready Testing Should Be Cut Due To Online System Failure

Hamilton County principals are asking that Part 1 of the TN Ready Assessment be dropped this year due to the recent crash of the online system for the program. The principals also asked that any Part 1 TN Ready test results  not be applied to students’ grades or to evaluations and rankings for school personnel and school districts. The local principals also ... (click for more)

Allan Walsh Named New Bradley County Workhouse Superintendent

Sheriff Eric Watson announced the appointment of Allan Walsh as superintendent of the new Bradley County Workhouse, which will begin construction soon and be opened this year.  Plans are for the new facility, to be adjacent to the Bradley County Sheriff’s Office, Jail and Courts complex, to hold up to 128 non-violent, low security inmates. A graduate of Bradley ... (click for more)

District 5-3A Hoops Haunted By The Owls' Absence

ATHENS, Tenn. – District 5-3A basketball coaches gathered here on Wednesday to set up brackets and choose regular season All-District teams. In terms of all-district selections, the coaches did that fairly simple matter of voting and tabulating the numbers in short order. Bradley Central swept the top player honors when Cole Copeland and Rhyne Howard were selected to the ... (click for more)

Red Bank Picked To Win Region 2-A/AA Wrestling

It appears that the Red Bank Lions will be the target for teams involved in the Region 2-A/AA wrestling tournament being held at Hixson Middle School this weekend. The Lions, fresh off Saturday's A-AA State Duals title, are the early favorites for the upcoming tournament after claiming six number-one seeds in the 14 weight classes during the seeding meeting held Wednesday at ... (click for more)