Sioux City Fire Chief gets green light to address EMS worker shortage
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SIOUX CITY, Iowa (KCAU) — Council members voted to give Fire Chief Tom Everett the power to fill vacant EMT, lead paramedic, and paramedic positions with firefighter positions through attrition or retirements.

The other resolution amends the “statement of authorized personnel complement” which deletes 3 EMS medical technicians and 8 paramedic positions and adds 11 firefighter positions.

Chief Everett says this is due to staffing and turnover issues they’ve been dealing with along with the inability to fill those positions.

“So for a few years now, we’ve been unable to really keep up with openings in our ems division. So that means a lot of overtime for our staff, both in the EMS division and firefighters. So, what this does is, is it’s going to bring us to full staffing and it’s also going to just maintain that for us for some time. So, having a little bit smaller EMS division is going to allow us to slow the hiring process there, and hopefully, that way, we can get a good list of people who want that job.” Everett said.

At the last council meeting, there were some concerns about the resolution. So, the Fire Chief worked with 2 unions and council members to come up with a compromise. This caps the number of paramedics in firefighter positions to 15.

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