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A View From One Side of the Bonita Unified School District Fence : Fire Protection in Monterey Park

September 22, 1988

For the fourth time in the past 40 years, firemen are trying to convince the Monterey Park City Council to contract with the county for fire protection services.

Fire Chief Jim Page and his men allege that the county would provide better services at lower cost, at the same time providing Page and his men better salaries, retirement and other fringe benefits.

In the past, council members turned down the proposal because they felt the city would be better served with its own fire department.

"Home rule" today may be an anachronism. It may make sense to contract for police and other services.

Before making a decision based on a report by Page, the council should appoint a citizens committee to study the matter. That committee should include former Mayors Howard Fry and Kenny Gribble, who have considered these matters in the past.

If the council decides that Monterey Park should continue running its own fire department, firefighters who want county affiliation are free to apply and qualify for transfer.

ELI ISENBERG

Monterey Park

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