Thursday, October 28, 2010

An Open Letter to the Timberlake Community

Oct 22, 2010
I am not personally involved in the recall efforts against commissioners Rudebaugh and Fish,however, I was a direct witness to their behaviors (both public and behind closed doors) and completely support and understand why the petitioners want them removed from office.

Rudebaugh and Fish are currently circulating a flyer that falsely states that “the only real reason the petitioners want a recall is because of a strong personal attachment to the former fire chief,a desire to have the former management structure returned, and a $500,000 permanent levy” on the citizens." These claims are false and simply represent more of the scare tactics these two men used to get elected in the first place. It is a well known fact that I am not returning and there are no plans for a levy or the return of the previous management structure.

The fire district is in very poor shape both in terms of equipment and personnel, and its future should be seriously discussed and decided by the citizens, in the form of town hall meetings supported by a community survey, which was the original plan crafted on December 16, 2009 in a work session of the entire board, including these two new commissioners. That meeting gave me unanimous direction to send out a newsletter and survey, to schedule town halls, and proceed with the commissioner supported plan to test public support for some form of levy to address the problems posed by a dilapidated fleet of vehicles. However the newsletter was halted by these two commissioners one day before it was to be mailed.

The August 2010 Timberlake Fire newsletter stated “In mid February, the chief acting on his own without Board approval, removed many pieces of equipment from service.” The board was informed that removing the apparatus was an option one week prior, and none of them objected. In fact, Rudebaugh gave specific direction to do it. Soon after that happened, he put a gag order in place, and then violated his own gag order by leaking information to a friend who called the press, and then acted surprised and strongly objected when the information appeared in the paper. I couldn’t believe it.

I would also like to confirm statements that the management contract was my idea. In March, I researched this as an option and discussed it with other chiefs since I was privately considering another employment opportunity and wanted to ensure that the district would have continuity of professional management in the interim. I brought up the idea of a “management contract” to the commissioners as one of several “short term” alternatives to help the district survive within its current funding, even though the district's long term problems would not be fixed unless we either decreased service or increased funding.

It was understood by all that this was one of several alternatives, and that what was needed was for the board of commissioners to discuss all options in a public forum and obtain feedback to gauge which options the public would support. Unfortunately, commissioners Rudebaugh,Fish and outgoing commissioner Quillin chose instead to move forward with a management contract by acting behind closed doors. All of the planning and options were supposed to be transparent and open, but it was not. It was very dirty politics and it upset a lot of people. In closing, I would just like to thank the citizens of the Timberlake Fire Protection District for two
wonderful years in which it was my honor to serve as your fire chief.

Jack Krill
Former Fire Chief, Timberlake Fire Protection District


Rudy Rudebaugh said...

Former Chief Krill in a recent letter states we are using scare tactics when in fact he was the one who grandstanded for a levy and put public safety at risk by removing your emergency vehicles from service with a total disregard to the legal liability of this action.
He goes on to state we instilled a gag order, but fails to state that he went to the media before his commissioners (bosses) knew of his actions, not to mention the legal liability incurred as a result. Chief Krill states that he told the board one week prior of the option to remove all the vehicles, but none of the meeting minutes or recordings reflects this. He goes on to say in Dec 2009 the board gave him full authorization to move forward with the levy when the meeting minutes say nothing of this. Krill and Guinn state the rest of your Board operated behind closed doors for a management contract but the County Prosecuting Attorney says they did not. Two commissioners cannot halt a newsletter without a majority vote. How can he say what plans the petitioners and Jon Guinn have for your district without him still being involved in one way or another? In March 2010, he asked his Board to consider the possibility of outside management of your District and now He, Jon Guinn and supporters want us recalled for taking the idea and making it a reality that benefits all of us and put $79,052 back into our budget.

Kathi Ellis said...

At the last Timberlake meeting, Rudy, you indicated you had made it through the year with $9947 remaining in the budget. Of course that was before the July and August attorney bills of $6000 which took you over budget on legal expenses. Where in the world is this $79,052 you keep saying you put back in the budget? This recall isn't about Jack, or Jon Guinn. This is about your lies and hiding your actions from the public. You know as well as the rest of us the decision of the prosecutor was not for the June meeting. It was for the July meeting, and the recall had already been started by then. Lies and pat answers are not what the public wants. Honesty and transparency are!

Anonymous said...

To clarify some of the issues above...

It was confirmed that there was no legal liability when the vehicles were taken out of service, it was a decision supported by the fire district’s liability insurance company.

The email evidence proves that the Commissioners and Timberlake Firefighters were notified about the out-of-service vehicles before anyone else. I received an email from the CDA Press about 3 hours later wanting comments because they were notified of it by Larry Spencer.

Regarding the direction to take the vehicles out of service, the gag orders, the stopping of the newsletter, and the December 2009 meeting about plans for a possible levy - there are numerous emails as well as audio recording of the meetings as evidence to fully support all of it.

Jack Krill

Jeffrey Wherley said...

I want to thanks you Rudy, for telling me to go back and reread the minutes to meetings, I think I found some nice new stuff at the February meetings that continue to show how nasty you really are.

My posts on the minutes are long, proving more of your untruths, about true occurrences. I wish I could ad to the recall Conspiracy to slander and libel the Fire Chief.

The Out of service incident is very clear in the minutes of feb 18th, how Sam Scheu, somehow know about the trucks going out of service before they went out of service and was making calls to fire chiefs asking about equipment requests. How could a former commissioner know about something before it happens and commissioners Rudy and Marty, Deny they knew anything about it. Also how did Larry Spencer know about trucks being out of service for him to call the CDA Press and complain?

RUDY, MARTY, SAM SCHEU AND LARRY SPENCER all working together to make the Chief Krill look bad, Not to mention the Email that Commissioner fish sent all fire fighter and chief krill, giving not on permission but it was the DUTY of all FF's to pull out of service any Vehicle that had safety concerns.

They Blamed it all this on Chief Krill as the lone gunman, but it sure looks like he was the patsy for a group of goons on a mission.

"Chief Krill said he spoke with Chief Marcus at Northern Lakes this morning who told him that he received a call from former
commissioner Sam Scheu Monday morning who asked him if Chief Krill had called him regarding
borrowing an engine"

Anonymous said...

MY OPINION:The recall of 2 Timberlake Commissioners is NOT about a tax increase or levy, NOT about fiscal responsibility, NOT about higher taxes as they are stating. The recall of Commissioners Rudebaugh and Fish is NOT about firing the fire chief. It is NOT about them entering into a MOU with Northern Lakes. It is NOT about them entering into a one year management contract with Northern Lakes.
The recall of these 2 men is occurring because of HOW they are doing and making these decisions, without public input. There is no dissemination of information, no town hall meetings, no education as was promised, no choices, no public discussions. Occasionally “public comment” is allowed at the end of meetings, but after decision voting has taken place. Then the public gets a compulsory sweet “thank you all for turning out –meeting adjourned” from the chairman.
Some of these decisions could very well be the best financially sound ideas for the district. District members have the right to hear and discuss all the options on the table. The commissioners shouldn’t have the right to arbitrarily say “oh a levy will never pass, let’s not even ask the district members”. Please, ask me, let me check my wallet, let me choose what level of services I want to pay for, let the members vote. Back room dirty tricks and politics, lies, distortions, muckraking, needs to stay in Washington.
The district needs commissioners that will engage the public into productive townhall meetings to solve our financial & fire equipment deficiencies,not irrational,childish, bullying rants that pit neighbors against each other and lead to parking lot brawls. Our community & our firefighters deserve better leadership.

Susan Costa

LocalAthol said...

Who "determined" there was no legal liability for taking the fire equipment out of service? support of the liability insurance company doesn't waive liability.

Krill refers to "email evidence".
what email evidence? where is it?
Larry Spencer's supposed awareness doesn't prove that the fire commissioners knew of what Krill was doing. Did Krill consult the commissioners before going to the press? wasn't this very blog the first place Krill went public with taking the equipment out of service?

If the email and audio evidence Krill mentions exists, why in all this time hasn't the "recall effort" managed to get them by public records request and expose them publicly? they've had months.

Bay Views said...

Stop it! This is the second anonymous rant I have had to delete in two days. both sounded much like they came from the same person. Bottom line, as I have previously stated: "If you insist in slandering or insulting your neighbors, whether you live in Athol or Bayview, I will not post your comment, even if I agree with it." If you feel you have to criticize another neighbor that you disagree with, you must sign your name. Throwing rocks from behind anonymity is cowardice and will be treated here with comtempt.