BATAVIA – Batavia ESDA, a volunteer organization, now is under the direction of Batavia Fire Chief Randy Deicke as a result of changes the Batavia City Council approved this week.
Aldermen approved the changes at their meeting Monday. Deicke noted the issue has been discussed for the past few years.
In a memo to aldermen and Batavia Mayor Jeff Schielke, Deicke said the changes were needed to ensure “oversight of personnel and equipment being operated on public streets, as well as compliance with normal financial safeguards. The absence of such oversight can expose the city to legal and/or political liability.”
Batavia ESDA now will be run by Deicke as part of his duties. In addition, an ESDA manager position will be created. Deicke said the ESDA manager would be a civilian volunteer, working with him and the ESDA volunteers.
“Volunteerism is one of the key strengths of Batavia, and we feel this would help foster that volunteer spirit,” Deicke said.
Some of the duties of Batavia ESDA include developing, maintaining and operating the city’s outdoor warning siren system and developing and conducting emergency management training and education programs for city personnel and residents.