Cal Fire to Take Over Coverage for Norco

Council vote begins transition for Norco Fire Department

By Olsen Ebright
|  Thursday, Oct 13, 2011  |  Updated 8:58 AM PDT
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File Photo: A Norco resident submitted this photo of a wildfire east of Chino Hills in 2008.

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The city of Norco is expecting to save millions by transitioning fire coverage out of the city's domain.

The Norco City Council voted Wednesday 3-1 in favor of transitioning coverage from the city's local department to Cal Fire/Riverside County Fire Department, said Norco City Clerk Brenda Jacobs.

Councilman Harvey Sullivan voted against the deal. Councilwoman Kathy Azevedo was not present.

Sullivan said he voted against the proposal because of the process, not the idea or fiscal reality facing the city.

The cooperative agreement will save an estimated $1.7 million a year, and Norco FD's 18 employees will transition into Cal Fire employees.

The change is a good thing for the city, said Norco Fire Chief Peter Bryan. Fire responses, which total about 2,200 a year in Norco, should continue at the same speed, about 5-7 minutes per call, said Bryan.

The city department will retain two engines and two reserve engines that will be operated by Cal Fire, Bryan said.

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