Councilors Plan Workshop To Discuss OFD Audit

OSWEGO, NY – The members of the Common Council have studied the lengthy audit of the fire department separately.

Next week, they will sit down together to discuss what they have read.

“There really aren’t any surprises,” said Council President Connie Cosemento. “What we’ll actually do is tweak it a little here and there.”

council to hold workshop on OFD audit
The Common Council will hold a workshop to discuss the audit regarding the operation of the Oswego Fire Department.

The audit is quite critical of the department’s management, noted Councilor Ed Harrington (D-Third Ward).

“It doesn’t point any fingers. But you call tell by reading (the audit) there are a lot of management issues,” he said.

One, for example, is having city ambulances dispatched only from the eastside fire station, he pointed out.

The audit suggested putting an ambulance at the westside station as well, Cosemento said.

“They made that suggestion, and it’s already done,” she said.

Other suggestions deal with things like the way the department sets up vacation time for its employees, and perhaps “moving the Westside station southward, because that’s where the population is going,” she added.

“It just some pretty common sense stuff,” she said. “There isn’t really anything that would surprise you. We’ll get together next week and see how the council wants to handle the suggestions.”

The workshop is tentatively scheduled for 7 p.m. Nov. 15 in City Hall.

The council feels the taxpayers are paying too much for some fire department services and hopes the audit will provide them some relief.

However, Dr. John Granito, a representative of the consulting group from Boston that performed the audit, told councilors earlier this year not to expect a silver bullet remedy.

The focal point for the audit was the taxpayers, he explained.

“There may be ways to get more bang for the buck,” he told the council. “We’ll point out potential savings; you have to make the final determination.”