Lincoln, Grimsby collect award for shared fire department services


Published May 24, 2022 at 2:23 pm

Last September, Lincoln and Grimsby passed bylaws to share their fire services. Last week, they were awarded for it.

Last September, neighbouring Niagara communities Grimsby and Lincoln decided to join forces and share one single larger fire services department called the Niagara West Fire Department.

Last week, the two towns were recognized nationally for their Niagara West Fire and Emergency Services pilot project from the Canadian Association of Municipal Administrators (CAMA).

Not only that, the two towns received the first-ever 2022 CAMA Collaboration Award for a partnership between municipalities during a Virtual Awards of Excellence Ceremony.

Lincoln Mayor Sandra Easton thanked the CAMA for the special recognition, adding, “We aspire to raise the bar with Grimsby through the challenging task of refining our management and delivery model and broadening our commitment to public safety and fiscal accountability.”

Grimsby Mayor Jeff Jordan noted the two-town model “allows us to work more effectively toward the collective good of both communities. I have confidence in the success of this project in the longer term, thanks to the collective knowledge and expertise of our administrative team lead by CAOs Harry Schlange in Grimsby and Michael Kirkopoulos in Lincoln.”

That said, the shared fire services is a pilot project for the two neighbours at the moment, as it’s being rolled out in two phases.

Phase 1 began October 1, 2021, and is expected to continue for atwo years. During this phase, a single fire department has been created and a Joint Advisory Committee consisting of members of Council from both municipalities was established to oversee and provide governance to the service area.

A Fire Master Plan will also be carried out through a third party. Pending approval from both municipal Councils, Phase Two will proceed to full implementation of the partnership in 2023.

However, Niagara West Fire Chief Greg Hudson said so far, so good.

“I am pleased to share that there has been much collaboration and cooperation by the merged departments,” said Hudson.  “It’s been an honour to act as Fire Chief in the jointly established Fire Department thus far, and to lead this strong and dedicated team focused on safety and well-being of our community.”

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