The Friday Report
  April 8, 2022
Since 1996, the prestigious Fire Chief of the Year award has recognized one volunteer and one career fire chief for their leadership, innovation, professional development, integrity, public service and contributions to the fire service. 

Nominations for 2022 are now open. All nominations are reviewed by a select committee of IAFC members. The nomination deadline is June 15, 2022.

Providing Protection for Those Who Protect Us
Casco Industries, Inc.®
Casco Industries, Inc. has been in business for over 72 years. Casco is a family-owned business and is in its third generation of ownership. Casco covers 8 States with 6 offices and warehouses, with two office locations in Texas with 18 salesmen and 6 service tech’s covering the State. Casco is the exclusive dealer for MSA SCBA, Globe manufacture, and many other Fire Service Products in most of the states it covers.
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2022 Spring Academy – Grapevine
June 5-10, 2022
Embassy Suites by Hilton - DFW
Airport North 2401 Bass Pro Drive
Grapevine, TX 76051

2022 Fall Academy – San Marcos
Sept. 25-30, 2022
Embassy Suites - San Marcos

Click here for more information about the Embassy Hotel.

Follow the link below to register.  

Sugar Land 
May 1-4, 2022

This will be an extended program with additional networking opportunities provided by the Sugar Land Fire Department.

Follow the link below to register. 



Assessor Training Program
April 13 & 20
Distance learning webinar

Quality Improvement for the Fire and Emergency Services Workshops 
April 13-15
Grand Junction Fire Department, Grand Junction, CO

April 19-21
Marysville Fire District, Marysville, WA

May 2-4
Covington Fire Department, Covington, GA

May 24-26
Town of Cary Fire Department, Cary, NC

Follow the link below to register for these events. 

On-Demand Webinars and Resource Documents
We encourage you to take the time to access these free resources in the CPSE University — Click here to view videos and download handouts. 

Martinez Architects, LP
Casco Industries, Inc.
How to Combat the EMS Staffing Crisis: Recruitment and Retention Roundtable
Tuesday, April 12
3 p.m.  ET

Recruiting and retaining staff in the emergency medical services field has always been a priority and, more recently, a challenge. With the ongoing COVID-19 pandemic, this challenge has only grown. Departments across the country are experiencing severe staffing shortages and are constantly looking for new ways to entice new members to join.

Join in the conversation as we discuss the many struggles that come with staffing shortages, how the recruitment and retention process has changed, and the different methods that have both been successful and not so successful.

Follow the link below to register. 

The Texas Division of Emergency Management (TDEM) recently announced plans to expand field staff operations in the Lone Star State to support continued growth. The move will provide more comprehensive state support for additional Texas communities and will improve emergency management capabilities statewide.

TDEM plans to restructure funding received from FEMA emergency management performance grants disbursed to states to provide necessary resources for emergency management. By updating the way Texas uses this funding source, TDEM will be able hire 100 new field response employees, called county liaison officers, across the state. These new emergency management personnel will be trained and equipped to work as part of an incident management team to support local, regional and statewide efforts.

This new program will place state emergency management personnel in 137 of the 254 counties, increasing coverage from 12% of the Texas counties to over 53%.

SOURCE: IAFC Government Relations and Policy Department
President Biden’s budget recommends increases to fire service programs like the Assistance to Firefighters Grant and Staffing for Adequate Fire and Emergency Response (SAFER) grants.

Other programs, such as the State Homeland Security Grant Program (SHSGP) and Urban Areas Security Initiative would receive slight cuts.

Biden’s budget recommends increases to address the nation’s growing wildland fire problem. The budget includes nearly $4.9 billion for the U.S. Forest Service’s wildland fire management programs, including more than $2.2 billion for the U.S. Department of Agriculture’s (USDA) Wildland Fire Operations Reserve Fund and more than $1 billion for USDA wildland fire suppression operations.

The budget also proposes small cuts to the State Fire Assistance and Volunteer Fire Assistance programs, which are re-named National Fire Capacity and Rural Fire Capacity, respectively. The FY 2023 budget would expand the federal wildland firefighting workforce; and ensure that federal wages are no less than $15 per hour. The budget also recommends greater technological support for wildland fire detection and response, including FireGuard satellite imagery. 


Gov. Abbott issued a disaster declaration last week for 16 counties affected by wildfires and directed the Texas Division of Emergency Management (TDEM) to continue to activate resources, while the State Operations Center remains at Level II: Escalated Response. Abbott amended this declaration on April 1 to include numerous additional counties. 

At that time, there were 19 state agencies involved in the state's wildfire response, according to a press release from the Office of the Texas Governor.  

The Texas A&M Forest Service (TAMFS), the lead firefighting agency in the state, reports more than 900 local and state firefighters mobilized in current firefighting efforts, including more than 300 TAMFS firefighters engaged in the response and approximately 400 out-of-state firefighters.

More than 200 firefighters from 70 different local fire departments are mobilized across the state through the Texas Intrastate Fire Mutual Aid System (TIFMAS) as well as 65 fire engines and 35 aviation assets.

Current Deployment of Wildland Units Across Texas
Table: Current deployment of wildland units across Texas.

According to a NewsRadio 1080 KRLD report, progress was made on battling the wildfires last weekend. On April 1, 10 fires were still burning across the state. By April 4, this number was down to three, two of which were 80% contained.

The Big Hippo Fire in Cottle County has burned 60 acres and containment is at 80%, the report states, while the Adrian Fire in Nolan County is 90% contained after blackening more than 500 acres. Meanwhile, the Reynolds Bend Fire in Throckmorton County has burned 200 acres and is 40% contained, according to the report which attributes this information to the Texas A&M Forest Service.  

Please follow the link below to view updates about the ongoing Texas wildfires disaster. The Texas Division of Emergency Management (TDEM) website provides an overview of the ongoing disaster, offers resources for affected citizens and features an up-to-date wildfire map.

Emergicon , LLC.
Waco Convention Center
100 Washington Ave.
Waco, TX
April 13, 8:30 a.m.
Held in conjunction with the TCFA Conference.

Fort Worth Fire Department Training Center
509 W. Felix St.
Fort Worth, TX
May 5, 10 a.m.

These meetings are held so that TCFP stakeholders can have an opportunity to ask questions of TCFP Leadership and receive updates on agency activities affecting the Texas Fire Service. They are designed to allow face-to-face conversations between agency staff and those regulated by TCFP to improve relationships and ensure the transparency of TCFP operations.

Meetings typically provide an overview of the following information:
• Update on commission actions.
• Pending rule and/or curriculum changes.
• Update on committee opportunities and activities.
• Identifying areas where the agency could improve services.

Follow the link below to register for CE credits and to view the full list of upcoming TCFP Regional Meetings. You can also click here to be taken directly to the myTEEX Student Portal, where you can register for CE credits.

The Texas Municipal League's most recent Legislative Update provides information about the House Ways and Means Committee's upcoming public meeting regarding an interim charge on sales tax sourcing, an update on the federal infrastructure bill, the Supreme Court's finding that censuring elected officials isn't in violation of their First Amendment rights, and the state Supreme Court's most recent COVID-19 emergency order.

While the TML Leadership Academy's Course I is sold out, the organization has a few upcoming events, trainings and webinars planned.

Newly Elected Webinar: Interacting Constructively with the Media
April 14
11 a.m.-noon

Public Funds Investment Act Training
April 25-26

Newly Elected Webinar: Governing Ethically — Understanding Your Influence 
April 26
2-3 p.m.

TMUA — Leadership and Management Conference 
April 27-29
College Station

Follow the link below for more event details, including links to webinars. 

After a one-year hiatus, TEEX’s Leadership Development Symposium will return to San Marcos, Texas, on May 17-19, 2022.

The Symposium offers an unmatched environment for leadership education, including development in budgeting and finance, health and wellness, personnel management, mentoring and more. Speakers from diverse backgrounds — academics, corporate leaders, veterans, medical professionals, entrepreneurs and motivational speakers — offer a wide range of fresh perspectives on leadership, benefitting everyone in public service. Beyond education, the Symposium provides top-tier networking opportunities for emergency responders in Texas.

Attendees of this year’s Symposium will hear from speakers such as YouTube influencer Jason Patton; business professor, veteran and entrepreneur Dr. Bridgette Chambers; Texas A&M University Director of Athletics Ross Bjork; Rob Mendez, coach, inspirational speaker and author; and Ron Derrick, Corporate Emergency Manager for Whataburger Restaurants. Some topics covered will include deployment leadership, mental resiliency, energizing a tired workforce and bridging the gap between generations.

The Symposium is free for residents of Texas and $150 for out-of-state residents. First responders, including law enforcement, fire and EMS, receive continuing education units for attending. To find out more or to register for the Symposium, please visit the Leadership Development Symposium Newsletter or the Leadership Development Symposium Registration.

In this week’s episode, Brad and Curt discuss additional fallout from a sexual harassment lawsuit involving Canadian firefighters, the termination of a Rhode Island firefighter, the overturning of a punitive schedule change impacting East Chicago firefighters, a First Amendment case out of Palm Beach County, and a suit against Illinois firefighters over a photo and social media post of a shooting victim.

Brave firefighters in the Rivne region of Ukraine tackled a blaze caused by a Russian missile strike on an oil depot near Lutsk in the west of the country on Monday, March 28. 

SOURCE: Matt Bruce, The Atlanta Journal-Constitution
The Decatur Fire Department touts itself as a bastion of progressiveness, pushing boundaries in an arena of public safety that tends to be entrenched in tradition.

It was the first, and remains the only fire department in the United States with an all-female command team, according to city officials. Chief Toni Washington leads the ranks and is supported by Deputy Chief Vera Morrison, her second in command, and Assistant Chief Ninetta Violante.

The three women head up an agency with 55 firefighters, providing steady leadership in one of the most male-dominated lines of work.

Eight years ago, Megan Fitzgerald-McGowan, manager of NFPA’s Firewise USA program, left wildland firefighting to help residents and communities prepare themselves to withstand wildfire. As she recounts in this NFPA feature, her recent visit to a fire-ravaged California town illustrates the enormity of the challenge — and underscores why she wanted to work with communities in the first place.

It’s hard to put into words the heartache we feel for the people of Ukraine. They are an inspiration to us all as we witness their resilience, bravery, heroism, strength and courage. This is undoubtedly an inflection point in history, and the magnitude of what is happening in Ukraine is still unfolding. We are deeply humbled that, in the midst of missile attacks, Ukranian lawmaker Inna Sovsun agreed to join Strategic Government Resources' Mike Mowery, Ph.D., and Senior Vice President Austin Holifield from Kyiv.