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The Oak Bay Fire Department hall. Image: © 2023 Google

St. Stephen co-responds to Oak Bay fire calls after resignations

By Brad Perry Mar 27, 2023 | 11:49 AM

The community of Oak Bay is now without much of its volunteer fire department after several members resigned.

But the Municipal District of St. Stephen is assuring residents that there are plans in place to provide fire coverage.

Most members of the Oak Bay department resigned last week over concerns around the local government amalgamation process.

Local governance reforms in January saw the Town of St. Stephen and portions of five local service districts — which included Oak Bay — combined to form the Municipal District of St. Stephen.

As a result, the volunteer fire department in Oak Bay now falls under the jurisdiction of the Municipal District of St. Stephen.

But concerns about how the process has played out prompted the department’s chief and now most of its volunteer members to resign.

“This process of amalgamation has been fraught with behind closed door actions, no communication, and what feels like more of a hostile takeover than an amalgamation,” read part of the resignation letter sent to reporters.

RELATED: Several Oak Bay fire department members resign

In a Facebook post on Friday, the Municipal District of St. Stephen said the CAO accepted the resignations “as differences proved to be irreconcilable at this time.”

The municipality said St. Stephen Fire, which consists of 20 volunteers and six full-time firefighters, will automatically co-respond to any Oak Bay call out.

The change, according to the municipality, will “support the fighters who continue to serve on the Oak Bay roster.”

Other mutual aid partners have also been made aware of the situation and have offered their support in the event of need, said the post.

“Residents in areas serviced by the Oak Bay station can be assured that services are in place to ensure appropriate response in the event of need.”

As has been well publicized, a number of firefighting personnel from the Oak Bay Fire Department elected to tender their…

Posted by Municipal District of St. Stephen on Friday, March 24, 2023


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