August 20, 2013
Come late September, the Eastside Fire & Rescue board will be right back where it was in June — having to decide on a funding model that meets the needs of all members.
The difference will be that in eight weeks the group will have agreed on two things: what value they need to offer to retain members and how they maintain a stable organization. The process won’t be easy, said facilitator Neville Wallace, with Online Business Systems of Portland.
“Whether you like it or not, you will be collaborating,” Wallace said. “We will be accessing what works well, what doesn’t and what can be fixed easily.”
July 9, 2013
The Eastside Fire & Rescue board isn’t really known for unanimous decisions, especially when discussing the partners’ funding model. But at a June 13 regular meeting, they all agreed it was time to look at hiring an independent facilitator.
EFR is a consortium of Sammamish, Issaquah, North Bend and Fire Districts 10 and 38, but Sammamish officials have called the funding model unfair because it bases payments on the value of property rather than the number of service calls.
Sammamish officials had been trying to convince other members of EFR to switch to a funding model based 75 percent on property value and 25 percent on the number of service calls, but the other EFR partners rejected the proposal in March.