Boone County Fire Protection District selects firm to find chief

Wednesday, February 18, 2009 | 10:01 p.m. CST

COLUMBIA — The Boone County Fire Protection District board accepted an offer from a North Carolina consulting firm Wednesday evening to conduct its national search for a new chief.

The board voted to solicit a contract from Emergency Services Consulting Inc., but has not yet entered into a binding agreement with the firm. Fire District board member Shelly Dometrorch said she will contact the search firm Thursday to begin working out the final details of the contract.

The search firm was selected from among three other finalists for its extensive experience in helping volunteer fire services find chiefs and its understanding of Midwest culture, Fire District board chairman John Gordon said. 

"They're coming out of the starting gate at lap 25," board member Dave Griggs said, referring to the firm's experience.

The search will cost the district between $17,000 and $21,000, not including additional expenses, Dometrorch said.

Factoring into the decision is the fact that the consulting firm is also currently working on a contract with University City. There is a chance the Fire District will be able to share the search firm's additional expenses, thereby reducing the overall cost of the search, Gordon said.

In 2008, former Fire District Chief Steve Paulsell was forced to resign after concerns about his salary and contract were raised by board members. Scott Olsen has served as interim fire chief since Dec. 2.

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