Harvey to help as Dixmoor closes fire department due to finances

2013-12-02T14:05:00Z 2013-12-02T20:02:35Z Harvey to help as Dixmoor closes fire department due to financesGregory Tejeda Times Correspondent nwitimes.com
December 02, 2013 2:05 pm  • 

HARVEY | The city’s Fire Department will take over the bulk of firefighting protection to neighboring Dixmoor, which closed its Fire Department on Sunday due to financial reasons.

Mayor Eric Kellogg said Monday that Dixmoor officials contacted Harvey city government, citing increasing finances that had caused them to lay off six of their 12 firefighters earlier this year.

Harvey and Dixmoor share a border, and Kellogg said in a prepared statement he views the matter as one of being “good neighbors” with surrounding communities.

“We conducted a feasibility study and analyzed the pros and cons of taking on Dixmoor’s fire services,” Kellogg said, in the prepared statement. “We decided that the city of Harvey has the capability to efficiently coordinate and offer our fire services to the village.”

Kellogg said the City Council for Harvey approved a three-year intergovernmental agreement when they held a special meeting Nov. 21. The mayor said the terms of the agreement allow either municipality to opt out of the deal at any time.

Dixmoor village officials declined to comment on Monday about the situation.

The deal comes despite the fact that the now-shuttered Dixmoor Fire Department was in the Mutual Aid Box Alarm System division 22, while Harvey and its Fire Department partner communities are in MABAS division 24.

Division 22 communities such as Alsip, Blue Island, Calumet Park, Crestwood, Merrionette Park, Midlothian, Posen and Robbins will now assist Harvey Fire Department officials on calls related to Dixmoor.

Whereas Division 24 communities including Burnham, Calumet City, Dolton, Glenwood, Lansing, Lynwood, Riverdale, South Holland and Thornton in Illinois, along with Munster in Indiana, could be called in to assist Harvey with a Dixmoor fire if conditions became severe and extra help were needed.

“If it were a three-alarm fire and more assistance were needed, then we could be called in to that division to help,” said Dolton Fire Chief Terry Murphy. “But those kinds of fires don’t happen that often.

“We haven’t been called into Dixmoor in years,” Murphy said.

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