News

Firies set to soldier on

THE number of cuts to paid rural firefighters remains hazy but Warwick area group officer Alan Payne said the video calls, redundancy letters and new operating structures handed down to paid Rural Fire Service officers on Tuesday were not part of a "premature circulation" as claimed by Minister Jack Dempsey.

"It was not a proposal on Tuesday," he told volunteers from Warwick-based rural brigades on Thursday night.

"It was set in stone.

"People were given their redundancy letters and told they would take effect in March."

The Daily News asked Mr Dempsey yesterday why redundancy letters were sent out, if the people who received them had actually lost their jobs.

"I have not ticked off on the restructure model and have asked my department to come back with other options," he said.

"At this stage nothing is set in stone until the department comes back to me with a structure agreed to by all parties."

The Daily News obtained a letter sent from the Queensland Fire and Rescue Service Commissioner on Wednesday to all paid staff.

Commissioner Lee Johnson was clearly under the impression these changes were happening.

"The release of the State Budget now enables the Queensland Fire and Rescue Service to undertake the required changes to our organisation by undergoing a process or renewal and structural reform," he said.

"In this new structure 45 uniformed staff and 15 administrative staff positions will no longer be required."

Mr Payne said under the new structure 346 brigades in the Toowoomba area and 7259 volunteers would be controlled by three people in an office in Beenleigh.

"To us, this is impossible for anyone to manage," he said.

The Warwick group officer was adamant they would continue to fight fires to the best of their ability in the Southern Downs.

"We will continue to support the Warwick group," he said.

"But we will not be sending strike teams to places like St George, we do not have the operational support to co-ordinate this. We mustn't let our group structure waver."

The volunteers at the meeting agreed they would continue to do what they signed on for.

"None of us are not going to go out and fight a fire," one volunteer said.

Mr Payne said a meeting will be held in Toowoomba next week and he would put the feelings of the Warwick Rural Brigades forward.

Topics:  budget, firefighters, jack dempsey, lnp, queensland government, rural fire service




Warwick pays their respects to fatal fire victim

A man has died in a devastating Warwick house fire on Saturday night.

Locals respond to tragic death of man in house fire

Driver refuses blood test after Southern Downs crash

Fire crews are rushing to rescue to men trapped in a vehicle.

Driver refuses to give blood sample after late night crash

RAIN WATCH: Southern Downs cops a drenching, river rising

The Condamine River rises after constant heavy overnight rain

The whole region has been drenched overnight

Latest deals and offers

Marvel-ous: Thor actors visit sick kids at Lady Cilento

Stars of Thor: Ragnarok dropped in on patients at the hospital

Folk singer looking forward to her Gympie Muster debut

Alternative country folk singer Fanny Lumsden will perform at the Gympie Muster.

FANNY Lumsden to serenade new fans with her country hall-style show.

Patti Smith confirmed for Bluesfest 2017

CONFIRMED: US singer Patti Smith performing in Switzerland last year.

Find out who else in the first line up announcement

Angie and Yvie ready to toast The Bachelor on Gogglebox

Angie and Yvie in a scene from the TV series Gogglebox.

ALL the regulars return in TV show about people watching TV.

Morgan Freeman asks: are we alone? Why do humans exist?

Morgan Freeman in Through the Wormhole. Photo: Discovery Science

Question all you thought you knew, on Foxtel.

Five new things to see and do at this year's Muster

There's already plenty of fun to be had at the XXXX bar.

Here are five new things to see and do at this year's Gympie Muster

Cheap Fraser Coast island drops its price

Suna Island in the Great Sandy Strait will be auctioned by Ray White Hervey Bay on Saturday morning.

This is the cheapest island you will find for sale in Australia

How a family home can fit on a 250sq m block

This is what you can build on 250m2.

Here's the floor plan of a home built on 250sq m

$100m plan for Curtis Island 'world class' luxury resort

$100 million resort: Top views at Turtle Street at Curtis Island.

"At the moment we think it meets all the town planning approvals.”

Coast building approvals at seven-year high: report

The the 2015/16 Development Indicators Annual Highlights Report documents local development activity that took place during the last financial year.

New report shows increasing development on the Sunshine Coast

Top honours for Mackay and Whitsunday builders

The Kerrisdale Gardens property from Paynter Dixon Queensland which won them Project of the Year.

Mackay and Whitsunday builders awarded top honours last night.

Investors eye Gladstone's $4m island with resort approval

UP FOR SALE: Turtle Island is on the market.

CHINESE and Sydney investors flag interest in Gladstone island.