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Posted on: June 14, 2017

City of Mill Creek Statement on Fire Services and Emergency Medical Services Contract Negotiations

Fire District 7 Commissioners and personnel attended the June 13 Mill Creek City Council meeting to present a letter and make remarks pertaining to current contract negotiations.

The City of Mill Creek is disappointed that Snohomish County Fire District 7 chose to move contract negotiations into the court of public opinion and emotion, which is contrary to the negotiation ground rules agreed upon by both parties.

The City will ensure that public safety will not be diminished. Mill Creek will continue to have quality fire and emergency medical service.

Yet, this commitment does not mean the City is captive to unchecked cost increases. The City must balance its goals of providing quality public safety services while maintaining fiscal responsibility. As the attached costing model provided by the Fire District demonstrates, the substantial annual costs that the Fire District has purported to incur relative to Station 76 pit the City’s goals against each other, which results in complex and lengthy negotiations.

The City worked carefully over the last biennium to overcome a significant budget deficit. It balanced the budget through careful analysis of expenditures and reduction of exorbitant spending. The City’s approach has not changed.

The City entered negotiations knowing that the parties may not be able to reach mutually agreeable terms. To ensure quality fire and emergency services continue within Mill Creek, the City has taken steps to provide fire services through an alternate provider or in house should the need arise.

While it is the City’s hope that contract negotiations with Fire District 7 are successful, it can only agree to terms that compensate the Fire District fairly for the services provided within Mill Creek and are fiscally responsible.
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