Clarification: City-Fire District relationship
by Jeff Switzer
The report of Fire Chief Jim Davis' resignation and the terms of his severance compensation have produced many concerned phone calls and confusion in the community.
The relationship between the City of Woodinville and the Woodinville Fire and Life Safety district is contractual.
The city annexed into the fire district for fire services after it incorporated, much the same way it did with King County Police services.
The City Council made Davis an honorary citizen in appreciation of his work in the community as a resident and as chief. Davis lives outside of the city limits.
The severance compensation agreement was made between the Board of Fire Commissioners and Davis, in the presence of the Fire District's attorney and Davis' attorney. The money does reflect taxpayer dollars, but decisions made by the elected and appointed Fire Board, not the City Council.
The district represents about 40,000 residents covering 36 square miles. The city, a large customer of the district, has just under 10,000 residents in 5.65 square miles.
At the request of the council several weeks ago, the city is hiring a consultant to determine its options for providing fire protection services to its residents, which may involve starting Woodinville's own fire department at some point.