COLUMBIA - Two Boone County Fire Protection District employees, Tyler Beauchamp and Ryan Adams, are taking pay cuts to join the Columbia Fire Department.
Columbia Public Communications Director Toni Messina confirmed Thursday that Beauchamp and Adams "have been offered and have accepted employment with Columbia Fire."
Their new job starts September 8.
Beauchamp joined the fire district as a volunteer in 2003 and was hired as a training officer in December 2006. He currently makes $41,800 and is provided a Ford Explorer work vehicle. Adams started as a volunteer in 2005 and was hired as a mechanic in November 2006. He makes $35,511 and is provided a service truck. Both are set to be hired at the city's entry-level firefighter I status, which offers a starting salary of $31,379, after completing the city's 12-week training program.
Columbia Fire Battalion Chief Steven Sapp said both could still take a position with another agency before September 8. However, he said the likelihood was "99 percent" that both would become employees.
Beauchamp and Adams were not able to be reached by telephone to say why they decided to change agencies.
Gale Blomenkamp, county fire district division chief, said the City's fire department "made great choices in hiring both of them."
"These guys furthering their careers is a good thing." Blomenkamp said. "They took the opportunity when it presented itself. They have been great employees; I think anybody at the office will tell you the same thing. There is no hard feelings about that. We support them in every way possible."
Beauchamp currently lives in the fire district's Station 1, east of Columbia. Beauchamp would need to remain a volunteer to continue living at the station. Blomenkamp was unsure if Beauchamp would continue to live in the station after his resignation on September 5, adding that several people work both for the city and for the fire district as volunteers. He said additional fire district volunteers are also joining the city's department in September.