Retirement Cluster, Bull riding and the 1st road trip of 2012!

Yesterday ( January 10th. ), while on duty; I and several other members of the department (and City workers in general) attended a meeting on the proposed changes to our pension plan. It reminded me of a post I made 2 years and 1 day ago( to the date ) back on the “Melrose Misfit”  Blog.

In that post, our Battalion Chief ( Bobbie Slayton ) had to pay us a visit and deliver the news that our Administration was busting the crew ( the order came from up high ..our Department is “micro-managed … the Battalion Chiefs can’t even run their own Battalions). I used a few  ” visual aids ”  to describe my/our feelings …. LMAO . The picture to right is one of those “visual aids”. I think I nailed it!

Take the time to visit that post by clicking HERE 

Like I said, today brought back memories of that post. The funny thing was that “Coon” (past Melrose Misfit aka Scott Boone) was thinking the same thing. He made his way over to me and says .. “hey, you remember that post from back when they busted us up”… LMAO.

So the meeting ended up ok. I think our members brought out some very valid points that the “bean counters” hadn’t considered (or at least that’s how they acted). Believe it or not, for a room full of firemen; it was a very civil meeting. I do find it amazing how uneducated the people responsible for our pension plan is when it comes to “Public Safety” workers.

It’s also funny how folks in those positions can “tweek” numbers and figures to reflect what they want. We have been shown reports where they compare our plan to that of two of our neighboring jurisdictions. Both of those localities are on the Virginia Retirement System (VRS) .

The bottom line is that they both currently enjoy a better pension than we do despite the fact that our “multiplier” is slightly higher. One of the proposed changes is to lower our multiplier so to be “in line” with these other 2 localities. They already draw more than we do yet lowering our multiplier will bridge that gap??? Yea… that’s what we think but they have the “numbers” to prove it. Of course they’re not counting or figuring in their “LEO” benefits (among other factors).

I’m not going to bore ya with all the details, I just wanted to point out how funny it is that they “tweek” the numbers how they want and think we can’t / wont figure it out! Most other city workers soon faded out. We were 2 hours in and all that was left was firefighters. YEA … a room full of firefighters, an Assistant City Manager and some pension fund administrators!  (ding ding)

Several of our members REALLY impressed me. It’s been a long time since I’ve seen multiple members stand up and say what’s on their mind…. what’s on ALL OF OUR MINDS !  The second video in that above link to the Melrose Misfit was a toilet flushing … THAT’S OUR MORALE ! It been there for a while.

The Assistant City Manager heard about it …. loud and clear … nothing held back.

I wont list all the members names who stood up but I will call out one …. Captain Todd Stone.

Todd is 100% firefighter and he “gets it”.

Captain Stone pulled no punches … he put it all on the table. He even went as far as to speak out about the accommodations they had prepared for us ( we met in a “mezzanine”  where 2/3 of the crowd had to stand).

Again, I wont go into detail but I do want to say THANKS to Captain Stone for all he does. President / coach of our football team, IAFF L-1132 A-shift VP, strong Captain, good friend and BROTHER. He set the example yesterday and we need more like him! ( I just wonder where Admin will transfer him to??? LOL )


I posted this pic on my Face Book page

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I stole this picture from good friend and fellow Blogger Kelly Grayson . I LOVE IT.

It reminds me of “The Buckaroo” . I just wish I knew what the bull was thinking…LOL

Anyway, I showed the pic to the Buckaroo and he had a fit! He thinks it looks like him too …. hell, he thinks it IS him.

We had a little discussion about the pic and bull riding that I caught on video. I know how much you guys LOVE the Buckaroo videos so here he is sharing his thoughts on the picture …….

I have to wrap it up for now and get on the road. I’m heading out for the 1st “road trip” of 2012.

It’s not the 1st  Ironfiremen / road trip because Rhett is not going. Yep … I gotta go this one alone!

Rhett is so hen pecked  errrrrr busy that he can’t get away for this one. It’s ok because it’s going to be a quick up and back to Ohio anyway.

I’m heading up to the Fox Fire World Headquarters in Wyoming, Ohio. Zach Green of MN8-FoxFire  is working on some awesome projects for 2012.  It’s going to be a GREAT and exciting year and the Fire Critic and will be right in the middle of it… I CAN’T wait!

I’ll also get to see one of my favorite gals …. Mariah Leavitt  from  Fire Rescue TV . I can’t “spill the beans” or give out any details yet but you are going to want to pay VERY CLOSE attention to these two companies in 2012 and the very near future.

I’ll try to update ya from Ohio but in the mean time …

Follow and “Like” Fire Rescue TV on Face Book .. click HERE

Do the same for MN8-FoxFire by clicking  HERE

Ok, I’m on the road … may even swing into a station or two along the way…. I’m kinda hurting this morning ( we caught a little work last night ). I think I’ll be home late Friday night but I’ll try to update sometime before. Until then ….

Stay SAFE and in House!

Captain Wines