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Fire merger talks warm up

Talks began in earnest Monday as the Bremerton City Council and Central Kitsap Fire & Rescue commissioners (CKFR) met with consultants to review the process for possibly combining the two fire departments.

Representatives from the Wilsonville, Ore.-based Emergency Services Consulting Inc., (ESCi) presented an overview of what would eventually become a draft report for the group to consider. Throughout the four to six month process, the groups will have access to all the data through ESCi’s Web site and be able to track the firm’s progress.

The draft report is expected to offer commissioners and the council a spectrum of consolidation options — from a full merger, to contract agreements, interlocal agreements or keeping the status quo said Jack Snook, ESCi’s president.

The work is expected to begin next month as ESCi representatives begin interviews with stakeholders.

“Stakeholders are people who are going to be imperative to the success of the project,” said Bruce Caldwell, project manager for ESCi.

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