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Chelsea Area Fire Authority expects to be fully staffed soon

Chelsea Fire Chief Rob Arbini announced at this week’s Chelsea Area Fire Authority board meeting that Ian Ballard was the top candidate for the open lieutenant’s position and that he expects that the top two candidates to fill the two open firefighter positions will take place before the end of the year.

With this promotion and the two new hires, CAFA’s staffing will be at a full compliment.

In addition, the second contract negotiation talk with the firefighter’s union is scheduled to take place on Oct. 22. Board Chairman Tom Osborne and Board Member Tom Demske are representing the CAFA board while Lt. Derek Klink and firefighter James Gaken are representing the firefighters. Ballard removed himself from the negotiations upon the approval of his promotion.

Once negotiations are complete and a contract is ratified, Arbini said he will have the final numbers needed to present a balanced budget to the CAFA Board that includes estimated revenues of $2.185 million. He is waiting for the conclusion of the contract talks for the salary and benefits figures.

Arbini said firefighters recently participated in a training burn with several other departments at a home off Fletcher Road.

The Lima Township Board this week approved the restated Articles of Incorporation, and the CAFA board is waiting to hear back from the City of Chelsea, Lyndon and Sylvan townships.

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