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The Board of
Supervisors voted to restructure the composition of the Pittsylvania County
Fire and Rescue Commission during Tuesday night's meeting. In short, the Board
voted to increase the total voting membership from 8 to 11 members. Instead of
quadrant-focused membership, a fire and rescue representative will be appointed
from each of the County's seven election districts.
"We want every
Supervisor to have a voice in appointing someone from their district, and we
want to ensure that everyone on the Commission understands the issues and
challenges our fire and rescue community are facing," said Vic Ingram,
Chairman of the Pittsylvania County Board of Supervisors. "We all believe
in the important role that this Commission plays in shaping emergency services
in our community."
The Fire and Rescue
Commission was first established in 2019 to work with the Public Safety
Department to provide recommendations and oversee strategic planning for all
fire and emergency medical services provided in Pittsylvania
County. Collectively with the Public Safety Department, the Fire and
Rescue Commission serves as a centralized unit responsible to the Board of
Supervisors for all fire and EMS issues throughout Pittsylvania County.
Previously, the Board had four fire and rescue representatives and four citizen representatives from the four quadrants of the County. Under the newly approved structure, there will be a total of 11 voting representatives: 7 fire and rescue representatives, one from each election district of the county, and four citizen representatives from the four quadrants. The fire and rescue representatives are appointed by their corresponding member of the Board of Supervisors. The citizen representatives are appointed by the fire and rescue agencies, whereas before they were also appointed by the Board of Supervisors. A representative from the Board of Supervisors and the President of the Fire and Rescue Association also have non-voting seats. The updated public safety ordinance also stipulates that no County employees can serve on the Commission.
The new members of the Fire and Rescue Commission will be formally appointed during the Board of Supervisors' March meeting. The Commission has not convened in 2022 because of the these proposed changes.