Don’t force a merger that just won’t work

The road to creating a three-way fire merger between Central Kitsap Fire & Rescue, Bremerton Fire Department and South Kitsap Fire & Rescue has been quite a long one.

Well, it looks as though the end of the road has come for West Sound Fire & Rescue.

All three departments have officially pulled out of the merger after two years of meetings, an expensive study and hundreds of man hours put into the project. But that kettle is still steaming with talk of looking at the feasibility of merging BFD with either SKFR or CKFR. It obviously didn’t work for trying to merge three of the departments. The work on a new two-way merger is going to end up the same way. Meetings will be canceled, bickering between departments will continue and there will lie the merger on the drafting table. There will be long meetings and talk, but no significant action because no one can agree on what will work for all parties. The fact that money has already been spent on something that is no longer feasible should be enough to fold the plan for the present time.

There may be a time when this merger can work for everyone, but right now, in this economy, it’s just not that time. Those budgetary dollars are better suited for other expenses, not another ride on the merger merry-go-round.

Each department currently provides exemplary service to each respective community. Don’t taint that good record with wasting more money on a second look.

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