Elections 2013: Fire District 3 Commissioner No. 3

James Barnfather, incumbent
• Why are you running?

I am running for a second term because I wish to continue ensuring the safety of our citizens and firefighters, while saving money. Since taking office, I have worked hard to dramatically improve our safety ratings with the Washington Survey and Rating Bureau. This is the agency that provides the ratings for insurance companies based on our safety and efficiency. Good fiscal management doesn’t mean just cutting costs. It means strategically applying our resources in areas that improve our rating with the WSRB. Quite simply, as our safety ratings go up, your insurance rates go down. I am proud to say that while in office, our Safety Rating has increased by three full points (on the scale of 10). That is huge!


I have demonstrated visionary leadership, while providing public accountability and transparency. I have worked hard to provide the best training and best equipment available for our first responders and that equates to the safest, most efficient community for us all. Together, we CAN save lives, and we WILL save money. That was my campaign promise to you six years ago and will remain my primary concern in my seventh year as your experienced Fire Commissioner.


• Why are you the best candidate for the position?

I have spent my entire professional career of 37 years in the Fire Service, right here in the Northwest. I know the area, I know the people and I know what we need. I am proud to have been honored by the mayor, its citizens and my peers to receive Seattle’s highest honor of the Lifetime Achievement Award. By applying that kind of dedication to my community, I bring the best qualifications to this position.


I am a 31-year veteran of the Seattle Fire Department, where I earned degrees as a Heart Monitor Specialist, Senior Engineering Instructor and Certified Teacher. During the past six years as your Fire Commissioner, I have continued my commitment to advancement in the areas of the Fire Service, by obtaining certifications in Fire Service Law, Public Records, Open Public Meetings, Strategic Planning, Ethics, Labor Negotiations, Annexations and Mergers, and Leadership. A few of my other local leadership roles include vice president of a major homeowners’ association and president of the Sequim Valley Airport Association. I am currently the chairman of the board of commissioners, Fire District 3. My dedication to the health and safety of our community always will be a lifelong pursuit.


• What would you change about how things are being run now?

CHANGE is not a word used by those who are proud of what our fire district has become. Not those first responders who provide the superior safety and protection of our citizens, nor the deserving community who benefits from it. However, change IS a natural occurrence in our world and your Fire Service has to constantly be proactive in the areas of techniques and technology to provide the best it has to offer.


While I have been your Fire Commissioner, we have built a new fire station to provide better coverage and lower response times, built a state-of-the-art maintenance facility for our modern fleet, built an equally impressive training facility to provide the best training for our personnel, established the position of a Fire Safety Inspector for new construction code compliance … and the list goes on. All of which adds to our Safety Rating and lowers our insurance rates!
As your Fire Commissioner, I will continue to add to the safety and efficiency of our Fire District, while prudently managing your tax dollars.

SAVING LIVES and SAVING MONEY always has been my platform and will remain my primary goal. Why would we want to change that?


Charles Perdomo
• Why are you running?

To serve my community with the same passion and desire I had before retiring from the Fire Service at Miami Dade Fire Rescue Department in Florida. My professional public safety work experience consisted of over 13 different work disciplines, 36 public safety professional licenses, certifications and training curriculums. Additionally, I have experience in administrative, fiscal budgeting and working with multi-agency collaboration at the local, state and federal level, which is crucial experience for any community during a time of need.


• Why are you the best candidate for the position?

Because I have dedicated my entire professional career to serving my community with passion, loyalty and the never-ending pursuit of excellence. I bring the citizens of Clallam County my vast experience in the fire rescue service and bring a fresh and new perspective as to how we can work together to modify fiscal budgets to run a more efficient fire rescue department without reducing quality of service.


I recently retired as a fire lieutenant from the fifth-largest fire department in the nation, Miami Dade Fire Rescue Department in Florida. While at Miami Dade Fire Rescue, I worked as an emergency medical dispatcher instructor, a CPR instructor, a quality assurance specialist, a firefighter lieutenant paramedic, a driver operator, an aircraft rescue and firefighter, a hazardous material technician/specialist, a hazardous toxicology paramedic and a rescue diver. I also have extensive experience with domestic preparedness, disaster planning and working together with local, state and federal multi-agency collaboration, including mutual aide to neighboring departments from local, state and federal agencies. I strongly feel that my extensive experience in public safety can offer the Clallam County Fire District 3 community a fresh and new perspective on optimizing the already great fire service that Fire District 3 offers.


• What would you change about how things are being run now?
Four important issues. One, I would focus on re-evaluating the current Fire District 3 budget to see how it can be made to work more efficiently without increasing taxes. Two, I would look at trying to improve the Washington Survey Rating Bureau’s for Fire District 3 from the current fire rating to a lower fire rating in order to lower fire insurance rates. Three, I would try to have Fire District 3 involved more with the community in order to improve the relationship between the community and the District 3 firefighters. Four, I would work on improving the current District 3 minimum staffing to meet International Association of Firefighters national safe staffing standards of both firefighter and paramedic personnel in order to provide better service without creating additional financial burden to District 3 residents.

Sean Ryan
• Why are you running?

As a concerned citizen, the only influence I can have is locally. As a business owner in Clallam County for the past 19 years and a volunteer firefighter, I believe I can bring to the table a more community-minded view and solid business management to the governing body of the fire district.


• Why are you the best candidate for the position?

I believe that my life experience in raising a family and running a successful business, I truly understand how to run a budget. The fire district is in fact a business that needs to run as so to provide the citizens of Clallam County with the best service possible. In my many years as a volunteer firefighter, it has been my privilege to work with true professionals. I believe our fire district personnel are highly dedicated and well-trained fire and and emergency medical service individuals. These people understand what it takes to keep a high level of service and need a commission board who will listen and work with them to keep this district looking ahead.


• What would you change about how things are being run now?
The change I would bring is a business perspective and a fresh view from my experience working alongside our fire professionals. I believe I know what it takes to serve the needs of our community and the needs of the fire district staff while staying within our budget. My goal is to work closely with the management staff, the line personnel and the community to ensure good stewardship to the residents of Clallam County.

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