Oak Lawn Village Manager Larry Deetjen has chosen the new Fire-Rescue Fire Chief and the new Oak Lawn Fire-Rescue Deputy Chief and issued a press release that didn’t mention that the village plans to continue the same labor relations “negotiations” that have driven a wedge between management and the fire fighters union but did mention that the two men have been briefed on the issues.
Deetjen briefed both Mavrogeorge and Riddle on the “Oak Lawn -Fire Rescue Department’s recent personnel history and collective bargaining history”, according to the press release. Deetjen held “management team” meeting during the interview process and called the fire department’s labor disputes the number one fiscal issue which is creating a negative impact for all departments due to the demands for funding.
During this administration, Deetjen has successfully reduced the number of sworn personal in the department from 104 to 65.
Deetjen, Mayor Bury and the majority of the board have told the firefighter’s union that due to the reduced staffing, there are too many officers. The administration is expected to demand that the number of officers be reduced and that the starting salary for new firefighters be reduced.
According to sources within the fire department’s union membership and former membership, Deetjen intends to push for a reduction in minimum manning in court once again. The village has been previously unable to reduce the number despite spending millions in legal fees.
Both Mavorogeorge and Riddle are quoted in the press release. Mavrogeorge said, “It is an absolute honor to lead the men and women of the Oak Lawn Fire-Rescue Department and I look forward to serving the citizens with honor and integrity”.
Riddle said, “I am honored and humbled to join the long standing heritage of duty, pride and tradition of the Oak Lawn Fire-Rescue Department. Chief Mavrogeorge and I look forward to building our cornerstone of leadership values and attributes as we continue excellent service for our residents, neighbors and visitors to the Village of Oak Lawn”.
Deetjen, perhaps in reference to outsourcing paramedic service, noted in the press release that the two men “…will exploit opportunities and partnerships when such actions complement customer service and the Village’s million, values and fiscal constraints.”
Riddle also served as Captain/Acting shift commander for the Pleasantview Fire Distirct. He is a career officer in the United States Army Reserve and Served as Chief of Staff, Lieutenant colonel in the 303rd Maneuver Enhancement Brigade.
Both Riddle and Mavrogeorge will assume their positions on Wedensday June 13th.