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G'view narrows fire chief choice

GRANDVIEW - The city of Grandview has narrowed its choice for its next Fire Chief.

"We are reviewing applications as we speak," said City Administrator Jim Sewell late last week. Nine applications were received for the fire chief vacancy, one from as far away as Idaho.

The position has been open since Jan. 2. That was former Fire Chief Charles Damron's last day before starting work for the Toppenish Fire Department.

In the interim, Sewell said Captain George Saenz and Assistant Chief Dave Smith, a volunteer, have handled the fire chief chores. "They are doing a magnificent job," he added.

Sewell declined comment on whether Saenz or Smith are among the nine applicants.

Mayor Norm Childress, Sewell and two representatives from the fire department have provided input on the applications received.

Childress said he narrowed the list to three or four candidates at the end of last week. The mayor will also make the final selection.

"We're coordinating schedules for the interviews," he added. "Hopefully by the end of this month I'll have a decision.

"We're looking for someone highly qualified, who will be conducive to the growth of our city," said Childress. "We want someone who will fit in with the management team. First and foremost, we're looking out for the safety of Grandview citizens."

Sewell said the qualifications, according to the fire chief job description, should include experience leading a fire response and in supervising volunteers.

The Grandview Fire Chief position has a salary range of $3,432 to $5,151 per month, depending on experience and qualifications, noted Sewell.

Who ever is selected as Grandview's new chief, Childress is confident the city will have a winner.

"I'm real happy with the pool of applicants both for the fire chief and city administrator positions," he said. "It's a good feeling to know there are a lot of people who want to come and be part of our town and be part of our team."

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