Copenhagen’s fire chief: if department dissolves, village is next

Published: Oct. 3, 2022 at 3:34 PM EDT
Email This Link
Share on Pinterest
Share on LinkedIn

COPENHAGEN, New York (WWNY) - If the Copenhagen Fire Department disbands, look for a push to get the entire village to dissolve.

While at a community day at the fire department Sunday, residents learned the fire department’s side of things after the village board voted to abolish the department.

One reason the village board voted to disband the department was because the department failed to turn over its 2021 financial information.

The fire chief admits the department didn’t do that but said he’s “pretty sure” there’s no missing money.

A state audit of the department’s 2020 books showed $27,000 in payments with “inadequate documentation.”

Residents could sign a petition that could eventually save the department by forcing the issue to a public vote.

“If the fire department does dissolve, I think you’ll see another petition go out for to dissolve the village board and be the town of Copenhagen, and I know people don’t want to see that but, I mean, you’re only getting street lights and garbage around here. They’re going to be contracting with another fire department outside. The town can well deserve to do that,” said Copenhagen Fire Chief T.J. Williams.

Copenhagen Village Attorney Candace Randall points out that the fire chief isn’t a village resident. She says the village does more than oversee a fire department and just because the current department could dissolve, it doesn’t mean that another village department can’t be created in the future.