Town Square

Post a New Topic

Fire and emergency services consolidation proposal

Original post made by Peter Carpenter, Atherton, on May 26, 2011

I am a long time advocate of consolidation as a way of increasing both efficiency and effectiveness of public services. Given the challenges facing local governments now is the time to think boldly.

This story contains 147 words.

If you are a paid subscriber, check to make sure you have logged in. Otherwise our system cannot recognize you as having full free access to our site.

If you are a paid print subscriber and haven't yet set up an online account, click here to get your online account activated.

Comments (5)

Like this comment
Posted by Resident
a resident of Another Palo Alto neighborhood
on May 26, 2011 at 11:59 am

Love this idea, Peter.

Unfortunately, I doubt if our elected officials are interested in anything that looks as sensible a solution as this.

Like this comment
Posted by RadioGuy
a resident of Barron Park
on May 26, 2011 at 12:27 pm

RadioGuy is a registered user.

By far, my neighbors and I are happy with the service of the Palo Alto Fire Department. We have an excellent basic and advanced life support program in our city, in addition to a terrific rescue and fire fighting capability. While there are some savings that could probably be realized by merging departments, they would not address the fundamental issue facing the cost structure of our fire services. These are the same issues facing other cities throughout the country. As the recent dissolution of the Belmont/San Carlos fire services shows, mergers are not a panacea.

If our elected officials believe that closing our local fire station or merging with Menlo is a good idea, we'll actively work to remove them from office. I'm sorry to be so direct, Peter, but you seem to have a hard time taking "no" for an answer.

Like this comment
Posted by Peter Carpenter
a resident of Atherton
on May 26, 2011 at 6:56 pm

RadioGuy - Great that your satified with your current service but note that the City Manager has made clear that Palo Alto can no longer afford to continue to provide that level of service. I am offering a better alternative (equal or better service levels at lower per capita cost) - feel free to oppose my proposal but recognize that the alternative is not the status quo.

Like this comment
Posted by Crescent Park Dad
a resident of Crescent Park
on May 31, 2011 at 10:45 am

I would add Los Altos and Mountain View to the mix. PAFD already shares the larger equipment with MV already (ladder trucks, etc.). Plus PA, MV and LA have just agreed to share the call center services.

Like this comment
Posted by Peter Carpenter
a resident of Atherton
on May 31, 2011 at 10:49 am

Crescent Park Dad states:"I would add Los Altos and Mountain View to the mix."

I agree. Ultimately one single agency could well and economically serve the entire peninsula - everything south of San Francisco and north of San Jose. Practically we need to start somewhere and PA and MPFPD would be a good starting point.

Don't miss out on the discussion!
Sign up to be notified of new comments on this topic.


Post a comment

Posting an item on Town Square is simple and requires no registration. Just complete this form and hit "submit" and your topic will appear online. Please be respectful and truthful in your postings so Town Square will continue to be a thoughtful gathering place for sharing community information and opinion. All postings are subject to our TERMS OF USE, and may be deleted if deemed inappropriate by our staff.

We prefer that you use your real name, but you may use any "member" name you wish.

Name: *

Select your neighborhood or school community: * Not sure?

Comment: *

Verification code: *
Enter the verification code exactly as shown, using capital and lowercase letters, in the multi-colored box.

*Required Fields

And one more makes three
By Cheryl Bac | 0 comments | 13,939 views

Sam's Chowder House Palo Alto to become burger chain
By Elena Kadvany | 16 comments | 6,339 views

Secretary of Plate
By Laura Stec | 3 comments | 3,819 views

New York College Tours
By John Raftrey and Lori McCormick | 1 comment | 1,471 views

Sing and celebrate
By Sally Torbey | 3 comments | 314 views


Palo Alto Weekly Holiday Fund

For the last 23 years, the Palo Alto Weekly Holiday Fund has given away more than $4 million to local nonprofits serving children and families. When you make a donation, every dollar is automatically doubled, and 100% of the funds go directly to local programs. It’s a great way to ensure your charitable donations are working at home.