Fire district near decision on new chief

Friday, October 16, 2009 | 5:09 p.m. CDT

COLUMBIA — With only two candidates left and references to be checked, a decision on who will be the next chief of the Boone County Fire Protection District is very close.

The fire district's board of directors met Friday morning and assigned tasks like checking references for the final two candidates, interim fire chief Scott Olsen, 51, and Kenneth Craft Jr., 47, assistant chief for the Bonita Springs, Fla., fire department. The board will meet again at 4 p.m. on Oct. 20 in a closed meeting to compare notes on the candidates.

Chairman Dave Griggs said the board’s goal is to have a tentative decision by the board's Tuesday meeting.

If there's agreement on a decision, the board members will vote to authorize a representative to open contract negotiations with the chosen candidate. Griggs said the board will meet again to finalize the progress once the candidate accepts the board's offer.

Olsen and Craft completed a day-long assessment on Sept. 16 and fielded questions separately on Sept. 17 from an independent review panel and then the district's board of directors.


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