Hiring a fire district assistant was brought up recently to county commissioners.

Before his retirement, former Lincoln County Fire District chief and Emergency Management Services coordinator Rick Stever said he felt the job was big enough to have two full-time positions, one for the EMS and one for fire district.

Eric Holt was recently hired to replace Stever, and commissioners have continued to combine the duties into one full- time position.

At the commission meeting June 4, Joe McLean, of Pioche, spoke during the first public comment period of the LCFD meeting on the agenda, suggesting that he could fill the spot of assistant district fire chief.

McLean, a volunteer firefighter in Pioche, read from prepared remarks in which he pointed out some “major issues that need to be fixed by placing the administration of the ambulance service under the Emergency Management Department.”

As EMS coordinator, Holt has certain certifications required by the state which he is working on to complete, but McLean said, “he can’t possibly catch up with all of these before the probationary period ends.” A worst-case scenario, McLean mentioned, is “the state would pull funding for the local program for lack of compliance.”

McLean suggested that if he were hired as an assistant to Holt, he would bring to the table not only “the desperately needed man hours,” but also his own extensive management experience and firefighter training.

He said the duties as an assistant would be to take over training for the county, equipment maintenance, and if necessary, EMS management. He would also provide additional coverage during county fire incidents, most of which are handled by Pioche volunteer firefighters.

Such a position, McLean believes, “would free up Eric to effectively manage the administration of the department, and have the time and training to receive the certifications he needs and provide a path for him to achieve his five-year plan, as well as have the time to train the volunteers at Mt. Wilson on the equipment they have out there, which would reduce the risk to property and life.”

Commissioners had no discussion following McLean’s comments and did not indicate what their thinking might be at this time.