Category Archives: Fire Department

Senate’s final version of bill eliminates cap on municipal ambulance fees MMA opposed


Thank you for acting on the Ambulance Fee Alert we sent you on November 1st!


The sweeping health care cost containment bill approved by the Senate last week does NOT include the provisions opposed by the MMA to cap ambulance fees. Your calls on this important issue made a big difference.


As you recall, an early version of the Senate’s health care bill included provisions to cap municipal ambulance fees and impose a state-driven system to oversee the local fee-setting process. That proposal would have imposed financial burdens on cities and towns, and made it difficult for communities to fund emergency response services.


Fortunately, the Senate Ways and Means Committee eliminated the fee-capping provisions from the legislation that was debated and passed by the Senate. This came after productive conversations between the MMA, legislators, Senate staff, Fire Chiefs and other EMS Coalition partners, as we explained why ambulance fee caps would hurt local budgets and undermine high-quality municipal EMS programs. The MMA’s effectiveness on this issue was possible because of the large volume of calls that Senators received from local officials, as you responded to our Nov. 1 Action Alert. Your calls were the key to our success.


The health care legislation now moves to the House, where a bill is expected to emerge for debate early next year. When you see your Senators over the upcoming holiday season, please thank them for protecting local fee-setting authority for ambulance fees, and when you see your Representatives, please explain why ambulance fee caps would be bad for cities and towns. And please thank them all for supporting municipal issues throughout the year.


If you have any questions regarding ambulance fee legislation or the Senate health care bill, please call or email MMA Legislative Director John Robertson at (617) 426-7272 x122 at any time.


Thank You Very Much!


Public Safety Building was a bargain

The table below about Public Safety Building costs was shared this week, first by a Gilbane Construction employee with Mike Quinlan, chair of the Building Committee, then to Mike Sullivan, and then to the Board of Selectmen.

To me it is reassuring to see both that the cost of our Public Safety Building was relatively low, but also that our size comports with what other towns are deciding to build, which reaffirms the appropriateness of the recommendations of the Building Committee about the size of a building that was needed.  Congratulations and thanks are again in order to the Building Committee for successfully steering the town through that project!

I have had many meetings in both conference rooms that are available for public use in the Public Safety Building, and can attest to both their quality and utility.

Publis safety bld prices


This was the accompanying email from Mike Sullivan that makes our low cost per sq. ft. even more remarkable –

FYI. This came in this morning from Mike Quinlan. Confirms what we’ve been hearing about what a good price (relatively) we got on out public safety building. Especially since our project included construction of the Dale St. School parking lot, repair of the Adams Street basketball/tennis court, and installation of solar panels. Even better, we still have over $500K left in out accounts. Mike S

MFD revamped website

Public Safety Bld-2

Medfield Fire Department tweets that it has a “newly revamped website”

Good looking website.


Volunteer for ALS & AHT by tomorrow


The Town of Medfield’s nascent:

  • Advanced Life Support Study Committee, and
  • Affordable Housing Trust

are seeking volunteers to serve on both those entities.

Those interested should express their interest to Evelyn Clarke by 3PM tomorrow, when our agenda closes for the Tuesday meeting, per our recently enacted policy about BoS meetings and agendas.  The Board of Selectmen will make appointments to both at our May 16 meeting.

Evelyn Clarke
Town House
Work   508-906-3012
Fax      508-359-6182




ATM votes last Monday on ALS & AHT

town meeting

ALS Study Committee & Affordable Housing Trust at ATM

The town posted a summary of the votes on each warrant article at last Monday’s annual town meeting (ATM) (20170424-Warrant_votes_2017) .

On the only two substantially disputed warrant articles, my own estimate of the votes was that the warrant article:

  • #15 about ALS had the ATM voting about 80% against giving $500,000 to the selectmen to implement ALS as it saw fit in the next year if the selectmen felt it was needed – a clear mandate that the residents wants to make that decision themselves, rather than delegate it.  ALS will now go to the study committee that both the Warrant Committee and selectmen recommended; and
  • #17 about funding the Affordable Housing Trust with a $1m. bond had the ATM voting about 80% in favor.  Those monies will provide the town a financial tool to use to create affordable housing, in its efforts to get to 10% affordable housing and to therefore eliminate unfriendly 40B’s.  The town needs about 139 more affordable housing units to reach that 10% threshold, or about 160 if one considers the likely increase in housing units in town to be needed after the 2020 census.

Residents interested in serving on either the newly created ALS Study Committee or the just created Affordable Housing Trust should contact Evelyn Clarke ( to make his or her interest known.


Warrant Committee handout about ALS



The Warrant Committee has prepared this Options Overview for Article 15.


Option 1.  As Is – For a Limited Time Period


Rely on neighboring communities to provide ALS intercept service (as we have in recent past) while evaluating an optimal long term solution


Expected Investment:             Potential $25K to study committee (no over-ride required)

Service:                                   Effective – ALS intercept will continue to work well for us if neighbors continue to support us while we evaluate other solutions

Uncertainty:                           Not a long term solution


Option 2.  Contract out ALS Services


Contract with a private service to dedicate an ambulance and 2 Paramedics to Medfield 24/7


Expected Investment:             $570K per year (based on one quote only)

Service:                                   Response time fast (have 2 ambulances available – ALS & BLS)

Ambulance utilization low

Staffed from a pool of paramedics with high utilization/experience

Uncertainty:                           Control of resources, Potential to share costs & services


Option 3. Hire FF/Paramedics


Hire paramedics and equip current ambulance to accommodate ALS service


Expected Investment:             6 hires < $700K ($544K-$606K per year +  $90K startup costs)

(Lower if we hire entry level Paramedics but will grow to this level within 7 years as a result of step increases)

4 hires would decrease investment 30%

8 hires would increase investment 30%

Service:                                   Response time fast (assuming no concurrent calls),

Equipment and Paramedic utilization low

Uncertainty:                           Number of hires/level of coverage
New Fire Chief not yet available – who will hire/train?
Cost (contract negotiations ongoing, retirement benefits not included,
budget to support required wage growth without future over-rides)


Option 4. Regionalize ALS Services


Share resources (either hired or contracted ALS) with other towns locally


Expected Investment:             Unknown – but lower than other long term options.

Potentially half (or less) than other options; could it be a profit center?

Service:                                   Response time fast (assuming no concurrent calls) especially if ambulance housed in Medfield, Utilization higher

Uncertainty:                           Partners, cost sharing, location of ambulance


Fire Chief selection process

The Board of Selectmen were given the following outline of a Fire Chief selection process on Tuesday evening this week by Kristine Trierweiler.  She said it was a process that she had worked out with the Personnel Board, mainly derived from the town’s last Police Chief search.  The difference this time is that the town’s consultant will be hired at the outset, instead of when we are substantially into the process, as was done with the Police Chief.

Kris opined that the process of selecting a new chief will take 4-5 months, which means that we should have a new chief on board to have input into resolving the ALS issue, if the town opts to pursue the recommendation of the Warrant Committee and selectmen to appoint an ALS Study Committee at the town meeting.

Mike Sullivan opined that the Chief needs to live in town, and/or commit to moving to town within 18 months per Kris, and that will be an issue that the selection committee will decide.  I have heard the suggestion that it is not a necessity and not required by other towns.

Residents interested in serving on the committee should contact Evelyn Clarke at the Town House – 508-906-3012.


April 2017


  1. Personnel Board to develop Fire Chief Selection process and file with the Town
  2. Formation of a search committee to include:

Scott McDermott, Town Moderator

Robert Cordon, Personnel Board Representative

Dr. Jeffrey Marsden, Superintendent of Public Schools

Chief Robert Meaney

Kristine Trierweiler, Asst Town Administrator

John Naff, Building Commissioner

Current/Retired Fire Chief

Resident at Large

Resident at Large

Committee’s first tasks will be to choose a Public Safety Management Consultant to assist in the transition and Assessment Center Process as well as develop selection criteria for position posting.

  1. Development of selection criteria
  2. Selection Criteria Finalized and Position Posted

Selection Committee will present selection criteria to the Board of Selectmen for their review. All changes should be agreed upon by both the Search Committee and the Board of Selectmen at a joint meeting.

Selection criteria determined after interviews with town officials, fire department employees and residents.

  1. Design of Comprehensive Assessment Center

Consultant will work with the Selection Committee to design and conduct a Fire Chief Assessment Center to evaluate candidates using various exercises and measure performance.


April 2017

  1. Recruitment and Selection

Selection Committee will work with Consultant to utilize various recruitment sources to construct a list of potential candidates. Initial screening of all resumes will be completed by the Selection Committee.

Candidates will be chosen by the Selection Committee to attend preliminary interviews and/or the One day Assessment Center to evaluate knowledge, skills, and ability.

Once the Committee has final list of candidates, the Consultant will complete character, background, and reference, checks on each of the finalist candidates. Standard reference checks will be used for all candidates by the Consultant in consultation with the Personnel Board.

  1. Board of Selectmen Appointment

After the reference checks are completed, finalist candidates will be presented to a full meeting of the Board of Selectmen. The Board of Selectmen will then interview each of the candidates and based on the scores of the Assessment Center, interviews and the reference checks a Fire Chief may be appointed by the Board of SelectmenMFD