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City Administrator Memo To Council: “At this time, I am not proceeding with reducing the number of fire stations”


by P.D. Lesko John Hieftje and his political pals have a reputation of ignoring public opinion. Perhaps the most egregious example was a 2008 Council meeting at which petitions with 6,000 signatures were presented to Council to urge them to put the question of whether to spend $75 million dollars to build a new city […]

January 14th, 2013 | Posted in Featured,Fire,Safety | Read More »

Ann Arbor Mayor: “Closing 1/2 of City Fire Stations Will Result In Much Better Fire Coverage.”


At Monday’s City Council meeting John Hieftje evidently wanted to make sure he understood exactly how deep in his own personal pile of horse manure he was standing. So, Hieftje pointedly asked the new Fire Chief, Chuck Hubbard (below), a 20-year member of the AAFD, “if the city would actually experience better service if it […]

March 13th, 2012 | Posted in Featured,Fire,Money,Safety,Taxes | Read More »

Lanx Satura [sat-ahyuhr]: Ann Arbor’s Mayor Hieftje Talks About Crime Spree


John Hieftje sat down to an interview with AnnArbor.com’s “editorial board,” almost one year ago to talk about the city’s budget. The city’s CFO Tom Crawford tagged along, primarily to nod, as it is commonly known around City Hall that Crawford uses his fingers to count, and that certain staffers in the finance department do […]

March 2nd, 2012 | Posted in Columns,Crime,Featured,Fire,Lanx Satura [sat-ahyuhr],Police,Safety | Read More »

Police Department Citizens Action Committee Uses Social Media and Email Campaign to Pressure Politicos to Rescind Cuts to Emergency Services


John Hieftje has a mantra: “crime is down.” On September 8, 2009, A2Politico posted a Whisper about Mayor Hieftje’s email response to Sunset area neighbors concerned about a growing number of daylight break-ins. On September 10, 2009, the Ann Arbor Police Department issued a Crime Alert, and a representative from the AA Police Department met with concerned neighbors. […]

June 23rd, 2011 | Posted in Crime,Featured,Fire,Police,Safety | Read More »

Service Cuts Have Resulted In Sharp Rise In Number & Frequency of Fire-Related Deaths


A2P Notes: This is filed under “Scoops & Scores,” because you read it here first! The graph, above, is simple to read. As the number of firefighters in Ann Arbor has declined, the number and regularity of fire fatalities have increased sharply. Let’s be clear, “fire fatalities,” as well as “crime statistics” are people. They are […]

May 2nd, 2011 | Posted in Best of A2P,Fire,Investigations,Safety,Scoops & Scores!! | Read More »

The Politics of Fire: Ann Arbor Fire Fighters’ Union Goes on the PR Offensive


John Hieftje and City Administrator Roger Fraser are both fond of pointing out that the Ann Arbor Fire Department is, practically, obsolete. Fraser, in describing what the AAFD does has said, “They have very few fires. Mostly what they deal with is EMS and car crashes.” This, of course, is an outright distortion of the truth. […]

April 9th, 2011 | Posted in Fire,Safety | Read More »

The Politics of Truth: Former Fire Chief’s Pants Burst Into Flame


Shortly after he was hired, Ann Arbor Fire Chief Dominick Lanza stood up in public and said fewer firefighters wouldn’t impact public safety. Then he quit “for family reasons,” when City Administrator Roger Fraser floated the idea of a blended on-call/paid fire department in order to cut costs. One month later, Lanza sent a letter to […]

March 19th, 2011 | Posted in Fire,Safety | Read More »

The Politics of Smoke: Fire Chief Lanza Quits Before The Fireworks Start


Fire Chief Dom Lanza just quit. Lanza’s a personable man, who came to Ann Arbor with some very good ideas about how the Fire Department could cut costs in order to preserve the coverage we have. The chances are very good when Dominick Lanza pitched his ideas to City Administrator Roger Fraser, he got nowhere […]

February 16th, 2011 | Posted in Fire,Safety | Read More »

The Politics of Safety Services: On Call Girls & On Call Firefighters, Roger Fraser Belts Out Blondie Classic “Call Me!”

At the recent City Council Budget Retreat, City Administrator Roger Fraser thrilled the standing room only crowd (the retreat was held in a largish, brightly lit closet to keep Council members on task and focused) with his rendition of the Blondie classic “Call Me.” For a quick refresher on the lyrics of the song, watch […]

December 9th, 2010 | Posted in City Council,City Services,Fire,Safety | Read More »

The Politics of Backdoor Privatization: Ann Arbor Residents To Pay $100,000 Each to Serve On All Volunteer Fire/Police Departments

This piece, below my comments, comes from Salon. I thought Alyssa Battistoni’s perspective was refreshing, and her look at backdoor privatization captures exactly what is going on in Ann Arbor. Here, in Lake Woebegone-on-the-Huron, where all the men have Ph.D.s, all the woman have Ph.D.s, but are doing “research” on their books at home while raising […]

August 23rd, 2010 | Posted in Ann Arbor Politics,City Council,City Services,Fire,Safety | Read More »

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