CROWLEY, LA — For weeks the Crowley Fire Department has been without a chief or interim chief, and the mayor says the reason is to be fair.
There’s a big question looming in the Crowley Fire Department. Who will the mayor appoint as chief, but also who will he appoint as interim?
“I think we’re absolutely in great hands,” said Crowley Mayor Tim Monceaux
When Crowley’s fire chief announced his retirement, mayor Tim Monceaux had two weeks’ notice. A month later he explained why there is not an interim chief.
“There are a number of potential candidates inside our fire department, so I just wanted to make it an even playing field,” he said.
To not give any who want the position an advantage, Monceaux is actively looking outside the department for a temporary leader.
“We still have quite a few people who are retired that have been on the fire department for a few years, and they are retired, and they are still living, and they are well respected within Crowley,” said Monceaux.
Monceaux explained four district chiefs are dividing the responsibility of chief now, and before launching the permanent chief, many of the applicants must take a fire chief exam to qualify. The city ordered the test a week ago, but their publication and grading could take months.
“All we can do is wait until the tests are complete, and we have the score results,” said the mayor. “Then we can begin our search and our interviews.”
Despite not having a sole leader to look to, Monceaux is confident a vacant chief position is not limiting the service Crowley firefighters provide.
“We’re continuing to do the same thing with the same personnel, and they are continuing to do a great job.”
News 10 did speak to multiple firefighters who want the job as chief, but none wanted to go on camera. Many said they didn’t want to risks their chances of being chosen for the job.
A key responsibility of the fire chief is submitting a report for a fire rating every five years, and 2020 is Crowley next year for a rating.