Uintah City Council Votes To Drop Volunteer Fire Department

Nov 17, 2020, 8:55 PM | Updated: Nov 18, 2020, 5:33 am

UINTAH, UtahThe Uintah Fire Department is on its way out after city officials voted unanimously to request annexation into the Weber Fire District Tuesday, likely bringing an end to 49 years of service for the volunteer fire crew.

“We want to do what’s best for the citizens of Uintah,” said Uintah Mayor Gordon Cutler.

The small town has a population of just over 1,3000 people. Of the 12 current volunteer firefighters, just one lives within the boundaries of the city.

“Can we sustain a fulltime fire department with that population?” Cutler asked.

On Tuesday, he sided with the city council in voting to pass a resolution to request annexation into the Weber Fire District. It was a disappointing end for the volunteer crew.

Few Uintah Fire Department volunteers live in Uintah, and traffic issues slow their response time. (Mike Anderson, KSL-TV)

Tensions have been a little bit high on both sides. But we’re both trying to press forward and do what’s right, said Marc Sacco, current Fire Marshal and the former fire chief of the Uintah Fire Department.

Sacco moved away from the area recently, reigniting a debate over whether keeping the local fire department was in the best interest of the citizens of Uintah.

Either way the community will be served well by the departments. I just hope that Uintah city keeps their own, Sacco said just before the city council voted.

“Our time spent on calls is completely volunteer and we love that,” said Casey Christiansen, battalion chief. “We think we can do it for a lower cost to the citizens than what Weber fire is going to charge the citizens.”

“There are a lot of folks that are very emotional about it,” said Don Pearson, a former councilmember and volunteer at the fire station.”

Station 91 in Uintah. (Mike Anderson, KSL TV)

But on the other hand, we’re not finding a lot of folks that are stepping up and saying, ‘OK, I’ll volunteer,’” he said.

Cutler and councilmembers said Tuesday that the current situation with COVID-19 had made it difficult for them to gather more input from their town of just 1,300. Limited numbers were allowed into the meeting Tuesday. Just two people spoke during the public comment period. Both were in support of the fire department.

I just hope that the voice of the community has been heard by the council, Sacco said. And they vote on behalf of their constituents who voted them into their office.

City leaders praised and thanked current and former volunteer firefighters for their service over nearly 50 years. By the end of the night, they had voted unanimously against keeping the local volunteer department. This is just the first step in the process for them to be annexed into the Weber Fire District.

KSL 5 TV Live

Top Stories

Local News

Follow @KSL_AlexCabrero...
Alex Cabrero

SportClips in Sugar House reopens after massive apartment fire

SportClips in Sugar House reopened for business Tuesday, 33 days after they were forced to close due to a massive fire that broke out at an under-construction apartment complex.
24 hours ago
Charges against Linda Tracy Gillman were dismissed after the state was not ready to move forward wi...
Emily Ashcraft, KSL.com

Charges dropped for 75-year-old woman accused of hiring hit man

Linda Tracy Gillman is already in prison after being convicted of trying to hire a hit man to kill her ex-husband and was scheduled to be on trial for attempting to hire another person, to eliminate evidence and a witness in that case.
24 hours ago
Jed Boal

Plow drivers needed, but UDOT says the storm itself was the source of delay

Was it staffing issues or the storm itself at the source of traffic troubles Monday night and Tuesday morning across the Wasatch Front?
24 hours ago
Tamara Vaifanua

Festival of Trees showcases 11-year-old who persevered against the odds

Patient Champion of the Festival of the Trees celebrates an 11-year-old girl who lost her leg in an accident six years ago and is now defying the odds.
24 hours ago
Beaver Mountain ready...
Mike Anderson

Cache Valley resorts cashing in on early start dates

Ski resorts in Cache Valley planned for some of their earliest start dates in about a decade thanks to our recent storms.
24 hours ago
(Shelby Lofton/KSL TV)...
Shelby Lofton

Dispatchers get accidental 911 calls from skiers because of iPhone crash technology

Summit County dispatchers are seeing an uptick in accidental emergency calls from skiers. The new crash technology on iPhones is designed to detect severe car crashes, but it's often accidentally activated at ski resorts.
24 hours ago

Sponsored Articles

house with for rent sign posted...
Chase Harrington, president and COO of Entrata

Top 5 reasons you may want to consider apartment life over owning a home

There are many benefits of renting that can be overshadowed by the allure of buying a home. Here are five reasons why renting might be right for you.
Festive kitchen in Christmas decorations. Christmas dining room....
Lighting Design

6 Holiday Decor Trends to Try in 2022

We've rounded out the top 6 holiday decor trends for 2022 so you can be ahead of the game before you start shopping. 
Happy diverse college or university students are having fun on their graduation day...
BYU MBA at the Marriott School of Business

How to choose what MBA program is right for you: Take this quiz before you apply!

Wondering what MBA program is right for you? Take this quiz before you apply to see if it will help you meet your goals.
Diverse Group of Energetic Professionals Team Meeting in Modern Office: Brainstorming IT Programmer...
Les Olson

Don’t let a ransomware attack get you down | Protect your workplace today with cyber insurance

Business owners and operators should be on guard to protect their workplace. Cyber insurance can protect you from online attacks.
Hand turning a thermostat knob to increase savings by decreasing energy consumption. Composite imag...
Lighting Design

5 Lighting Tips to Save Energy and Money in Your Home

Advances in lighting technology make it easier to use smart features to cut costs. Read for tips to save energy by using different lighting strategies in your home.
Portrait of smiling practitioner with multi-ethnic senior people...
Summit Vista

How retirement communities help with healthy aging

There are many benefits that retirement communities contribute to healthy aging. Learn more about how it can enhance your life, or the life of your loved ones.
Uintah City Council Votes To Drop Volunteer Fire Department