Editor’s Note: Every year, city departments set goals and objectives. In August, City Hall released information about how each of the 15 departments progressed toward these goals during the 2013-14 fiscal year. Over a several week period, the Daily Press will take a look at the goals that are being achieved (according to City Hall) and the ones that aren’t.

CITY HALL — For the Fire Department, many goals involve expansion or collaboration with other departments this year.
The Fire and Police departments are in the process of consolidating their communication centers, a move officials say is in line with the industry’s best practices standards. The target for completion of that project is June of next year and the task is 60 percent complete, according to department officials.
Some of the consolidation initiatives are on hold while the department hires a consultant. On the fire side, staffing remains a challenge for its current communication center, which operates independently from the police, according to department officials.
The department has been studying how other cities, like Torrance, pulled off consolidation and the Police and Fire departments have combined their training and operation manuals.
A new Fire Station 1 is the works, along with a new training facility, and the retrofit of Fire Station 3.
The project will be funded through a $35 million bond that could cost taxpayers $81 million over 30 years. The current Fire Station 1 was built in 1955 and does not meet seismic standards.
Designs are a quarter of the way to completion with a target of June of next year. Department officials are waiting for the final word on procurement of the new Seventh Street property for Fire Station 1.
A goal to train all captains in the second phase of company officer development by July was pushed back to the end of the year.
Six engineers and more than 10 captains attended the Los Angeles Area Fire Chiefs Association Captain’s Academy, according to the report.
Two of eight candidates successfully completed the Captain’s Exam. The Santa Monica Fire Department Captain’s academy is slated to start in September.
By next June, the department is aiming to develop a comprehensive mental and physical health wellness plan. They are 85 percent of the way there, according to the report. Chaplaincy and critical incident stress programs are already in place and the chief believes that more could be done in the areas of day-to-day stress management.
“However,” the report said, “this will have to be incorporated as time and priority allows.”
The department is halfway to its end-of-year goal of aligning its safety and workers’ compensation programs with industry best practices.
“SMFD is 90 percent compliant with OSHA (Occupational Safety and Health Administration) requirements,” the report said.
The department was tasked with creating a “one-stop-shop” for permitting and over-the counter plan reviews in conjunction with other city departments. This work is about 10 percent complete.
Fire Marshal Eric Binder met with Building Officer Ron Takiguchi about opportunities to enhance customer services. They found that the current system is working well.
The report lists about a dozen tasks that the department completed that weren’t originally in the work plan. This includes the department’s increased presence the Twilight Concert Series, a CPR training for citizens, and management of Glow and the Los Angeles Marathon.
dave@smdp.com

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