The Herald Bulletin

Afternoon Update

Cops, courts and fires

June 12, 2013

Email about ambulance mechanical problems draws critical response

Union rep concedes he may have jumped the gun with message


Leever noted that the union has started what he called a "massive" public relations campaign, and has gained enough support in the past few months to make a difference in the next campaign cycle. He said the union is prepared to use mass email and text messages to alert supporters about council member actions and votes on public safety issues.

The threat was clear: "We ultimately want our friends to remain seated and remain our friends, and those who have not supported us in the past to either start supporting our issues, or face the possibility of us working against them."

Reached by telephone for comment Tuesday morning, Leever initially seemed surprised anyone might interpret comments in the message threatening, adding that he sent the message because "I think the council should be aware of these issues."

It's not clear if that was before or after Bibbs issued a testy reply to Leever's message.

In it, Bibbs said the Fire Department executive staff had shared a user fee increase proposal with the council, calling it thorough, "diplomatic and respectful," and something he might consider supporting if it came before the council.

"As a result of your delivery style/tone, I do believe that I will have to revisit supporting such a proposal should it come before the council," Bibbs said.

By afternoon, after talking with members of the council, Leever said his intent was to never be perceived as threatening members of the council.

"I jumped the gun on the email," Leever concluded.

Like Stu Hirsch on Facebook and follow him @stuhirsch on Twitter, or call 640-4861.

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