Supply plan allows fire department aide to keep Princeton post through Sept. 1

June 28, 1994 (~estimated)

Supply plan allows fire department aide to keep Princeton post through Sept. 1

By Hank Kalet

Staff Writer

An agreement between the Princeton fire chiefs and the administrator responsible for day-to-day fire department operations has led to a temporary truce that will allow him to stay on through Sept. 1.

Ted Cashel, administrative aide since 1992, had planned to resign on July 1. Firefighters from the three companies had blamed him for perceived inconsistencies in the distribution of equipment, chiefs from Princeton Engine Co. 1, Mercer Engine Co. 3 and Princeton Hook and Ladder have said.

However, a month of negotiations that concluded last week have resulted in a new procedure for requesting and distributing equipment, Mr. Cashel said Monday.

Under the new plan, which is expected to be reviewed by Mr. Cashel and the chiefs of the three fire companies in late August, the chiefs of the individual fire companies will be responsible for approving equipment requests, while company captains will be responsible for distributing the equipment once it arrives.

Mr. Cashel will be responsible for verifying orders and ensuring that they are covered within the department’s budget.

Requests for items not covered in the fire budget will be referred to the departmental chief, who will have the final say, Mr. Cashel said. Benjamin “Roz” Warren, chief of Princeton Engine Co. I, currently serves as departmental chief. The post rotates annually among the three fire companies.

Previously, requests were passed directly from firefighters to Mr. Cashel, which often left him in the position of having to mediate between the different fire companies, the chiefs have said.

Mr. Cashel, who also serves part time as the fire prevention official for Princeton Township, has refused to discuss his reasons for tendering his resignation.

He said Monday that he believed that “things were moving in a very positive direction” and that “the internal decision making changes should make it easier” to perform his job.

Dave Bogle, chief at Mercer Fire Co. 3, agreed.

“September give? us three months to review how the changes are working,” he said. “We wanted him to stay on because we needed somebody who understood the system to help us incorporate the changes. And you don’t want to put somebody out unfairly, especially if the job is set up so that nobody could do it.”

The administrative aide position was created in September 1992 to relieve the joint department chief of some of the paperwork responsibilities. The aide is responsible for payment of bills, maintenance of training and financial records and purchase of supplies.

Mr. Cashel, who is the only person to have held the position, is being paid an annual salary of $12,000 for the 20-hour part-time position.

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