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Residents Get Insider's View of Evanston Fire Department

A 12-hour 'Tweet along' Friday let followers see pictures and hear updates on what department staff do during their shifts.

Evanston firefighters treated Twitter followers to Followers learned, for example, that firefighters pay part of the grocery bills for their shift meals, and got to see photos of the inside of a truck and the obligatory firefighter sliding down the station poll.

The goal of the 5-Alarm Tweet Along was to introduce residents to their firefighters and allow them to interact with the department staff. There wasn’t a ton of interaction as of early evening, but at least one firefighter dad tweeted in to say hello.

As of early evening, there also weren’t any blazes or major accidents that the department rushed off to. Instead, followers got a glimpse into the every day activities of the staff.

Here’s a sampling of some of the Tweets:

Possible fire, call come in at ~7:56am. Guys gear up & check home in question. Alarm was set off by kitchen smoke. pic.twitter.com/5QOVGTf7

Firefighters not only prepare their meals but also pay a preset amount out of pocket for groceries for every shift they work.

FF/MD Trippi doing pull-ups & Capt. Perrino hitting the elliptical. Have to stay in shape & prepared. #Evanston5Alarm pic.twitter.com/NaIdFlmB

This is not the city’s first Tweet along. The police department hosted one in November and Mayor Elizabeth Tisdahl held one in February. In all cases, the messages were hosted on the @CityofEvanston Twitter feed.

Are you a Twitter addict? You should follow us @EvanstonPatch. Our Facebook page is pretty swell, too.

Richard Schulte August 02, 2012 at 04:33 PM
San Bernadino files for bankruptcy. Perhaps it's time for Evanston to look into declaring bankruptcy too so that it can cut public employee retirement costs. "http://www.gopusa.com/news/2012/08/02/san-bernardino-files-emergency-bankruptcy-petition/?subscriber=1"
Richard Schulte August 02, 2012 at 10:36 PM
Excellent video. The #1 problem, retirees benefits, just like in San Bernadino and Stockton, California. Once again, thanks to FT for bringing up the subject with his harangue above. The next time you're on duty FT, just remember, you aren't going to get what you were promised. Evanston taxpayers can't afford you FT.
Richard Schulte August 06, 2012 at 11:03 PM
FT, another article about public employee retirement benefits: "Miami City Manager Johnny Martinez declared a state of financial urgency Friday for the fourth year in a row. The move gives the city commission authority to restructure its existing contracts with police, general employee, and fire unions. City commissioners agreed to not hike taxes in a budget meeting Thursday night, but instead will look to close a budget gap of tens of millions through union concessions. The $485 million budget must be balanced by September. "The unions are not cooperating with the process," Mayor Tomas Regalado told the Miami Herald. "We need to have a balanced budget." Martinez said in a statement that the city will be contacting union representatives to start up two weeks of negotiations. The declaration of urgency has likely incensed police and fire officials; according to Reuters, the latter group argued before city officials Thursday night that their pay has been cut 35 percent in the last 3 years already." http://finance.townhall.com/columnists/mikeshedlock/2012/08/06/union_pay_benefits_create_zombie_cities FT, once again, thank you for brining up the subject about pension benefits.
Richard Schulte August 09, 2012 at 10:42 PM
FT, a little more on the public employee pension scam: "In New York, a 2010 investigation by then-attorney general Andrew Cuomo, now governor, found widespread incidence of "pension padding" - public employees working extra overtime in their last year on the job to boost pay and retirement income. That's especially costly when it comes to well-paid public safety workers. The Manhattan Institute estimates nearly 10 percent of New York State cops and firefighters who retired in 2011 will receive six-figure pensions, from 2 percent in 2001." Source: http://www.reuters.com/article/2012/07/29/us-usa-pensions-policeandfire-idUSBRE86S02120120729
Richard Schulte August 09, 2012 at 11:02 PM
Some more news on public employee pensions: "Dozens of Detroit police officers swapped their side arms for picket signs Thursday as they marched around City Hall to protest a new contract and pay cut imposed on them by Mayor Dave Bing." "The city did not negotiate with the unions on the new contracts, which cut wages by 10 percent and require employees to pay 20 percent of their medical costs. Other previously bargained perks including bonus vacation days and annual increases to retirement plans have been eliminated. Hundreds of workers also will be laid off. Bing has said the cuts and other changes, which are expected to take effect in a few weeks, will save the city more than $100 million." Source: http://www.gopusa.com/news/2012/07/27/detroit-city-workers-protest-10-percent-pay-cut/?subscriber=1

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