Jackson Township Fire returns to cross-staffing for more efficient operations

The State of Ohio’s phase-out of tangible personal property reimbursement payments for local governments in 2016 significantly and adversely impacted Jackson Township’s state funding. In response, Jackson Township Division of Fire Chief Randy Little began an evaluation of his operations to make organizational decisions to continue to provide exceptional fire and emergency medical services with dwindling revenue.

Several cost-saving and streamlining options were considered, but the fire chief with approval from township trustees and administration decided to return to a successful cross-staffing model the division used for five years prior to the passage of a fire levy in 2014.

The operational change effective Nov. 21, 2016 requires fire personnel assigned to Ladder 202 to cross-staff a medic unit only when daily staffing falls below the required minimum to avoid expensive overtime costs.

“Cross-staffing is one way we are being as responsible with the fire department budget as possible while controlling overtime costs,” said Fire Chief Randy Little. “Other fire departments like Prairie Township successfully use cross-staffing models, and we have mutual aid agreements with Columbus Division of Fire and four neighboring fire departments to guarantee we continue to provide the highest quality emergency services our residents have always received.”