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Toledo, Ohio & Lake Erie

The Press Newspaper

The Press Newspaper

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       Three local fire departments plan to jointly apply for a grant from the Federal Emergency Management Agency to fund an assessment of their personnel needs.

        Departments in Lake Township and the cities of Northwood and Rossford are seeking a Staffing for Adequate Fire and Emergency Response (SAFER) grant from the agency, Bruce Moritz, the township fire chief, said Tuesday during the township trustees’ meeting.

        If the grant is approved, it will be used to pay for a consulting firm to study the departments’ service calls and staff levels, the chief said.

        “We’d like to have someone come in look at our needs and give us some recommendations. Our run volume continues to climb every year,” Moritz said. “This could give us a good format to map out our future.”

        The township trustees approved the application request.

        Josh Drouard, chief of the Rossford Fire and Rescue Department, said he expects city council to approve a similar resolution when it meets April 9.

        “This will help all three departments both individually and collectively,” he said.

Resolution approved

        In other business Tuesday, the township trustees approved a resolution supporting a bill pending in the Ohio legislature that would allow police departments in townships with populations of 5,000 or more to patrol and make warrantless traffic stops on interstate highways.

        Currently, police departments in townships with populations of less than 50,000 residents lack statutory authority to make warrantless stops.

        HB 255 had a hearing last September before the House Transportation and Safety Committee but hasn’t had a hearing since.

        The township resolution notes that “…the inability of township officers to enforce all laws on roadways that fall within their jurisdiction creates serious risk of harm to the travelling public, fire and EMS officials working within their capacity, road and highway workers working within their capacity.”

        It also states there has been a national recognition there is an “epidemic of drug-related issues, impaired driving, human trafficking and roadway incidents of violence.”

        Mark Hummer, the township police chief, said the bill is “stuck” in the House committee due to opposition from the Buckeye State Sheriff’s Association.

        He said he planned to meet with State Rep. Theresa Gavarone to discuss the bill but expressed frustration with not being able to schedule a meeting with Sen. Randy Gardner.

        State Rep. Steve Arndt is a co-sponsor of HB 255.

        The trustees also approved several personnel matters.

        Jacob Peacock was hired as a full-time police officer. He previously worked for the Walbridge Police Department.

        Todd Cromer was promoted to the rank of sergeant in the township police department.

        The resignation of Russell Fisher as a fire fighter/EMT was accepted. He is moving to Indianapolis.

        Joel Densic was hired as a firefighter.

       

       

 

 

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