Redwood City will formally submit its proposal to provide fire services to San Carlos for $5.9 million a year with a 5 percent annual increase. The San Carlos City Council will review the proposal, amongst others, at a special council meeting Monday night.
Many cities around the Peninsula have considered consolidating services as a more cost effective model in tough economic times. Redwood City Fire Chief Jim Skinner said this was a way to save costs for both cities, though exact amounts have not been finalized.
Another agency proposing fire services is Wackenhut Services, Inc. (WSI), a private provider of fire and emergency services, according to San Carlos City Clerk Christine Boland. Councilmemer Bob Grassilli will also propose making changes to the current joint powers agreement with Belmont to save the current contract. And finally, city staff will present a stand-alone service contract.
Skinner said that if San Carlos accepted Redwood City’s proposal, the city would save on overhead and administrative costs by reducing some redundancies. Amongst the cities between San Mateo and Redwood City, there are four fire truck companies. Skinner said the cities could reduce that number to one or two.
“It’s simply a matter of cost savings,” Training Chief Dave Pucci said. “Rather than each city paying for a Fire Marshall, we pay a third of the cost by sharing with Belmont and Foster City.
Skinner added, “Now more than ever is a good time to do that because all the cities are working off the same California Fire Code.”