Johnson Withdraws Plan To Revamp Fire Commission.
Post, 22 Oct 2008 (Helderman ).
Prince George's County Executive Jack B. Johnson has dropped a controversial plan to revamp the county's 38-year-old fire commission, the body that governs the county's volunteer fire departments.
Johnson (D) had asked the County Council to replace the board, now made up of volunteers elected by other volunteers, with a panel of residents, volunteers and paid firefighters that he would appoint.
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Volunteers, who help staff all but a handful of the county's 44 firehouses and own the majority of county fire trucks, had been incensed by Johnson's proposal to replace their elected leadership.
Paid firefighters and volunteers have long had a contentious relationship in Prince George's. Volunteers had argued the proposal was largely aimed at reducing their role; proponents had said it was a way to increase citizen oversight.