Fire protection personnel representing seven surrounding districts met in Barrington on Thursday, Nov. 1 to share ideas and plans for the Barrington Countryside Fire Protection District (BCFPD).
The meeting was an informal gathering to generate ideas for future service after the impending split with the village of Barrington’s fire department at the end of 2013. An impasse on staffing and equipment needs over the past several years led to the split. BCFPD is talking with surrounding fire departments about starting new mutual-aid agreements.
Districts represented at the meeting included Algonquin-Lake in the Hills,
Cary, Carpentersville, East Dundee, Fox River Grove, Hoffman Estates, Long Grove, Palatine Rural and Wauconda.
Tom Long, district treasurer, outlined the chain of events that led to a breakdown of the intergovernmental agreement between the village and BCFPD. At issue was the purchase of a 3,000-gallon tanker and hiring of additional personnel to meet safety standards for the district.
District trustee, Paul Heinze, initiated a discussion of the district’s plans and objectives for future service.
“Just getting by is not acceptable,” said Heinze. “We’re committed to exceptional service. No politician will play roulette with the lives of our citizens.”
The fire protection district covers more than 40 square miles surrounding Barrington, including Lake Barrington, North Barrington, parts of the Lake Zurich border and parts of Inverness.