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Sunday November 19, 2017

Archives for 2012

DOT: Captain Bowen’s Name to go on Smoky Park Bridge

ASHEVILLE – The state Board of Transportation voted unanimously this morning to rename Smoky Park Bridge the Capt. Jeffrey Bowen Bridge in memory of the city firefighter who died in the line of duty last July.

“Throughout his career, Captain Jeffrey Scott Bowen brought honor to the City of Asheville and Buncombe County and had his life tragically cut short leaving behind family, friends and co-workers,” the board resolution reads.

The action was a turnaround from a previous vote from the board’s Road Naming Committee, which had decided March 7 not to move ahead with the request because of a tradition of not naming state roads or bridges for fallen firefighters.

After strong public criticism, the board reversed course Wednesday and voted unanimously to support the renaming.

“We have heard a strong outpouring of support for Capt. Bowen from the local community and want to be responsive to their concerns,” Board of Transportation Chairman Robert Collier said in a statement today.

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Fire Department Spotlight: Statesville Fire Department


Statesville Fire Department

Statesville Fire Department

Fire Chief
D.L. Bullins

316 S. Meeting Street
Statesville NC 28677

Type of Department

Number of members

Number of Stations

Year department was established

County or counties your is district located

Services offered

Fire, Medical, Technical Rescue, Haz mat, Fire Inspections, investigations, and education

Annual call volume
1805/year (2010)

What challenges does your department face?

The City of Statesville’s 4th fire station is scheduled to open July 1, 2011.  Statesville last opened a station in 1975.  This expansion will be challenging but long awaited to improve the level of fire protection in the City.

Stoney Point Fire Department Internationally Accredited

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CUMBERLAND COUNTY – The Stoney Point Volunteer Fire Department (SPVFD) has received Accredited Agency status with the Commission of Fire Accreditation International (CFAI) for meeting the criteria established through the CFAI’s self-assessment and accreditation program.

The SPVFD is the first volunteer department in North Carolina and only the second volunteer fire organization to achieve accredited agency status in the nation.

This is a major accomplishment.

Of more than 30,000 rated fire departments in the United States, there are only 150 who have earned Internationally Accredited status with the CFAI and the Center for Public Safety Excellence, Inc.

CFAI is dedicated to assisting the fire and emergency services agencies throughout the world in achieving excellence through self-assessment and accreditation in order to provide continuous quality improvement and enhancement of service delivery to their communities.

The CFAI process provides an agency with an improvement model to assess their service delivery and performance internally and then works with a team of peers from other agencies to evaluate their completed assessment.

As part of the process the SPVFD satisfied more than 250 individual performance indicators assessing administration and governance, planning, goal setting and achievement, financial management and administration, direct program delivery, physical resources, human resources, training and competency, essential resources, and external systems relationships. This means that the SPVFD is following fire service industry best practices and good stewards of their community’s tax dollars.

Chief Freddy L. Johnson Sr. stated that the agency’s achievement of Accredited Agency Status “validates the dedication of the VOLUNTEER agency to provide the highest quality of service to our community serving both the City of Fayetteville and Cumberland County.”

Chief Johnson Sr. also stated, “This is a major achievement not only for the SPVFD but also for the entire system, whereas system wide fundamental improvements have been implemented as a result of the SPVFD accreditation process benefitting all county citizens”, and the proactive CFAI process is a fluid process that is on-going and will ultimately continue to improve the quality of services county-wide.

With over 1,200 Fire Departments in North Carolina the SPVFD is the twelfth department accredited behind, Asheville, Cary, Charlotte, Durham, Fayetteville, Gastonia, Greensboro, Jacksonville, Mooresville, Rocky Mount, and Wilson Fire Departments, all of which are career departments.

Read the Press Release:
Stoney Point Accreditation Press Release 031912

Learn more about the Stoney Point Fire Department in their annual report:
2010 Annual SPFD Report 042511-Final

North Carolina State Firemen’s Association Retirement Plan

Since 1998 the North Carolina State Firemen’s Association has been petitioning the IRS to allow career firefighters employed by non-profit fire departments access to the local government retirement system.  It was obvious the effort would not be successful so the North Carolina State Firemen’s Association decided to create their own retirement program.  Work on the system began about 18 months ago and is now coming to fruition.  We began signing-up fire departments on January 2, 2012.  Each eligible department will be allowed to design their program to suit the needs of the fire department and the participants.  We know we have created a fantastic plan, and it is a plan that will benefit the members.  That always has been our goal.  For information on the plan and to receive help signing-up please contact Deborah Phillips with Heritage Pension Services at 336-777-3615 or  Deborah and the staff at Heritage will work with you and answer all your questions. 

See the Memorandum below for additional information on the plan.




To:  All Departments Participating in the NCSFA 401(k) Plan


Date:  December 5, 2011

The North Carolina State Firemen’s Association provides  a 401(k) retirement plan form that may be adopted by the  not for profit (non-governmental) fire departments which employ paid full time and\or part time firefighters.  This plan has been in place since January 1, 1998.  Many changes and improvements in retirement plans have occurred over the years and the NCSFA felt compelled to explore the newer products available today.  As a result of that investigation the NCSFA made a decision to change the plan currently offered. 

 This new plan will also be for non-governmental fire departments that employ full time and part time firefighters.  This will be a multiple employer plan that allows individual fire departments to design their program to meet their particular needs.  This plan is designed so that the assets can be rolled over to the local government retirement plan if the opportunity ever presents itself.  Participants will find that a combination of the new plan, the economy of scale, and new, lower fees will make this plan very popular.

 This plan has a starting date of January 2012.  Prior to the start of this plan we will be freezing the old 401(k) plan. As part of the freeze of the old plan, no new loans are allowed.   Each participating Department will have several choices to consider. These choices must be made at the Department level and are not separate choices by each participant. The options your Department has are complex so a more detailed explanation will be provided next week. However, in general, the options are (1) leave the money in the old plan until all surrender charges have passed and then move the funds to your new plan, or (2) immediately move all funds to the new plan. 

If you have any questions or concerns, please call Deborah Phillips at Heritage Pension Services.  Her phone number is 336-777-3615.  She and her staff have the ability to explain all of the options and help you make the decision that is best for you. 



Paul F. Miller, Executive Director