Rookie Kenosha Fire Chief John Thomsen's lame plan to close and relocate fire stations isn't sitting too well with at least one powerful alderman.
G. John Ruffolo -- chairman of the Public Works Committee -- is smoking hot over Thomsen's plan to close the northside fire station at 2615 14th Place -- and rightfully so after pointing out that neighborhood is growing. He also has some justifiable concerns about the $100,000 annual contract with the University of Wisconsin-Parkside for fire and rescue services.
Word on the street is that Thomsen -- a darn good firefighter, by the way -- is playing water boy for Mayor John Antaramian who pushed for westward expansion without adequate planning for public safety services. On top of that, the city closed the downtown fire station.
Now Thomsen is bellyaching about how he wants to "equalize response times" but this was never brought up when the downtown station was open. Close that station and, voila, you have a response time issue.
The only part of this hairbrain scheme that has any plausible merit is building a new fire station west of Interstate 94 -- and only if the city sits down with Pleasant Prairie to see if the two municipalities could work out some type of joint facility. Of course, the city isn't well known for fostering good intergovernmental relations or for being good stewards of taxpayer dollars.