Henrietta Fire District

Prior to 1969. the Town of Henrietta was protected by three independently operated volunteer fire companies. They were Henrietta Fire Company #1, located on East Henrietta Road, the West Henrietta Fire Department, located on Erie Station Road and the Genesee Valley Fire Department, located on Riverview Drive. Each of those volunteer companies still exist today, as part of the Henrietta Fire District In 1969, the Town of Henrietta granted by resolution that the three volunteer fire companies consolidate operations and become a Fire District.

Today, the Henrietta Fire District is a combination department (career and volunteer) that provides fire protection and first response emergency medical services (EMS) to a response area of 41 square miles. This includes the entire town of Henrietta and the western portion of the town of Brighton with a combined population of over 52,000 full time residents. The district provides fire, rescue, and EMS service to 21 miles of the New York State Thruway I-90 and 11 miles of Interstate 390. It is estimated that as many as 275,000 people live, work, or pass through the Henrietta Fire District each day. On an average day it is estimated that over 35,000 vehicles travel through the I-90 exit 46 interchange and over 95,000 vehicles travel through the District on I-390. Between the Erie Canal and the Genesee River the District covers over 16 miles of navigable waterways. The Henrietta Fire District participates in a county wide mutual aid agreement that includes the City of Rochester and all towns and villages within Monroe County, population 744,344 (2020 US Census data). The Henrietta Fire responded to 5361 calls in 2021 as compared to 1167 calls in 1990. Due to the tremendous growth in population and expansion of business coupled with the downward national trend in retaining volunteers, the Fire District has increased it career staff from 13 (9 firefighters, 3 dispatchers and a secratery/treasurer) in 1990 to 76 today. In 1990 we staffed one engine Monday – Friday 8am – 5pm and had 1 firefighter / operator 24/7 for our ladder. Today we staff 4 engines, 1 ladder, 1 Battalion Chief 24/7 and have the Chief, Assistant Chief, Safety Officer, Training Officer, and a Community Risk Reduction Specialist on staff.

The Board of Fire Commissioners is the governing body commissioned with providing fire and rescue service to its residents. The cost for this service is paid for through the collection of your tax dollars. The District is its own taxing agency, under New York State Town Law, and therefore has the power to levy taxes (like a School District). The fire tax is the only means of funding for the Fire District. Unlike other forms of local government, we do not receive a share of income or sales tax, nor is there any specified annual state or federal aid that the district receives. However. the district is subject to unfunded mandates on the local, state, and federal level. While the Fire District can accept, and appreciates donations, the Henrietta Fire District cannot legally solicit funds through mass fund drive mailings or any other means Any fund drive mailing you may receive is from one of the three volunteer companies. Fund drive money is used to maintain the facilities of the three volunteer companies.

Henrietta Fire District Fire Stations

There are seven fire stations within the Henrietta Fire District. The Fire District owns four of these stations, and independent volunteer fire companies own the remainder.

The district owns all equipment and apparatus at the seven stations and rents the truck bays, radio room and the volunteer chiefs office space, from the volunteer companies.

District Owned Stations:

Station 4 located at 850 Bailey Road is the Fire District’s Headquarters. This station has a staffed engine company, truck company and battalion chief 24/7. Our dispatch center, administrative offices, Commissioner’s workshop, public meeting room are located here as well.

Station 5 located at 230 Pinnacle Road has a staffed engine company 24/7. The District Quartermaster is located here as well.

Station 6 located at 60 Erie Station Road has a staffed engine company 24/7. Station 6 is located on our training campus.

Station 7 located at 2695 West Henrietta Road has a staffed engine company 24/7. Station 7 was formerly the West Brighton Fire Department.

Francis G. Byrne Training Center located at 60 Erie Station Road. Our training campus consists of 2 multistory burn buildings, vehicle extrication training area, 100 seat auditorium classroom, fire station, drafting pond, ancillary buildings used to keep our firefighters trained to the most current standards.

The three-fire company owned stations are:

Station 1 – Owned by Henrietta Fire Company One located at 3129 East Henrietta Road. An engine and salvage company are located there staffed by your volunteers.

Station 2 – Owned by West Henrietta Fire Department located at 774 Erie Station Road. An engine and rescue company are located there staffed by your volunteers.

Station 3 – Owned by Genesee Valley Fire Department located at 9 Riverview Drive. An engine and salvage company are located there staffed by your volunteers.

 

WHO'S WHO IN THE FIRE DISTRICT

The Board of Fire Commissioners

The Fire District governing body is made up of five (5) Commissioners elected by the voters of Henrietta and West Brighton. They serve a five-year term, and one (1) Commissioner is elected each year. The election is held the second Tuesday in December, by state law. Any registered voter in the Henrietta Fire District may vote The Commissioners oversee administrative activities, including setting the tax rate, budget. apparatus and equipment purchases, building maintenance and repair or replacement, etc. Commissioners are assigned different areas of responsibilities. These include finance, insurance personnel, equipment, and building and grounds. Similar to the town and School

Boards, the only pre-requisite to becoming a candidate for Commissioner 1s that the candidate must live in complete the petition requirements.

The Commissioners hold a monthly business meeting on the second Tuesday of each month at the District headquarters. Other meetings may be held from time to time to conduct District business. Per NYS Open Meetings Law, all Commission meetings where District business is conducted are open to the public. The official newspaper of the Henrietta Fire District is the Messenger Post. All legal notices are published in this paper. The District also has a website www henriettafire.com which contains information about the District, current events etc.

Secretary Treasurer

The Secretary/Treasurer is an appointed. fulltime. position that serves as the chief fiscal officer and records manager of the Fire District. Duties include maintaining all records. prepare mandated state and district financial reports, prepare the preliminary budget for the Board and assist in preparing the final budget Also acts as liaison to various committees and legal counsel.

Assistant Treasurer

The Assistant Treasurer is a full-time position that performs general office functions with a concentration on HR duties and management of HR records. Assists the Secretary/Treasurer m other duties as required

Fire Chief

The Chief of the Henrietta Fire District is a career position and is ultimately responsible for the firematic operation of the Fire District. Some of the duties include· supervision of the career and volunteer firefighters and officers, liaison to Town, County and State agencies, assist with budget preparation, grant writing, purchasing, and serves with the Commission on various committees and labor contract negotiations. The Chief is supported by a Career Assistant Chief and four career and three volunteer Battalion Chiefs.

Assistant Chief

The Assistant Chief of the Henrietta Fire District is a career position and his current assignment includes overseeing Operations. Training and EMS programs. The Assistant Chief serves on various committees at the direction of the Fire Chief. The Assistant Chief also performs the duties of the Fire Chief in his absence.

Battalion Chiefs

The Fire District has 4 career Battalion Chiefs one assigned to each group. The Battalion Chief oversees the daily duties of the district and is responsible for the on-duty crew. The Battalion Chief is part of the command staff and is the initial incident commander at a fire scene.

The Fire Distinct also has 3 volunteer Battalion Chief positions. The District is divided into three geographical areas. A Battalion Chief is responsible for each of these geographical areas.

Career Officers

Currently the District employs five career captains and 17 career Lieutenants. These officers are assigned to each of the four groups of career firefighters and are responsible for management of the firefighters assigned to their group. Each officer is assigned an area of responsibility within the District. Examples would be scheduling, inventory, training, communications, apparatus and facilities.

A career Captain is also assigned to the staff position of Municipal Training Officer (MTO). This position is required by NYS Law and is responsible for the training provided to all firefighters This includes the annual one hundred hours of in-service training required for career firefighters. The MTO is also in charge of EMS recertification as well as weekly drills for volunteer firefighters This individual is also responsible for the recruit volunteer firefighting training program which runs thirteen weeks.

A career Lieutenant is assigned to be the District Safety Officer. The Safety Officer is responsible for the Henrietta Fire District meeting all local, state and federal safety regulations The Safety Officer is responsible for the safe operation of all personnel operating at any incident. The Safety Officer holds the authority cease all operations during an incident for safety concerns.

Volunteer Officers

The fire Chief will appoint, on an annual basis, volunteer officers as deemed necessary for the operation of the fire district. Typically, an officer will be assigned to each piece of fire apparatus. That officer is responsible the assigned apparatus as well as its crew while responding to an incident. The volunteer officers assist the volunteer battalion chiefs with operational and station duties in a battalion.

Career Firefighters

The first career firefighter in Henrietta was hired in 1975. The current career firelighters are divided into four groups providing coverage twenty-four hours a day. Each group consists of 4 staffed engines, 1 staffed ladder truck, 1 battalion chief and one public safety dispatcher. Each staffed apparatus has a minimum of 2 career firefighters and one career officer. We have an engine stationed at station 4 (Bailey Rd.), station #5 (Pinnacle Rd.), station #6 (Erie Station Rd.) and station 7 (West Henrietta Rd). Our ladder truck is stationed at station #4 and our battalion chief responds out of there as well. Career firefighters in Henrietta meet all the training requirements as specified by New York State. This initial training currently exceeds 400 hours in firefighting and rescue as well as an additional 200 hours of EMS training to become an EMT. All career firefighters are New York State certified firefighters and EMTs. All newly hired firefighters are nationally certified as well. In addition, as per NYS Law career firefighters must receive a minimum of 100 hours of in-service fire training annually and receive an additional 24 hours or EMS training annually

A question that is often asked is how to get hired as a firefighter.  All career firelighters have taken and passed a Civil Service exam and are hired in accordance with Civil Service law.

Volunteer Firefighters

The District has approximately 60 volunteer firefighters These dedicated people are your neighbors who give their time and efforts to protect you, your neighbors and guests. Our most senior active volunteer has served the community for almost 50 years All volunteer firefighters receive their training through the Fire Districts Training Office. Initial volunteer firefighter training, though not as long as career firefighter training, is still over 200 hours Many of our volunteers are also EMTs, with the same additional 200-hour requirement as career firefighters

Public Safety Dispatchers

The District employs four Public Safety Dispatcher. Each group is assigned one Public Safety Dispatcher. With a District as large and as busy as we are. we rely on these Dispatchers to provide the communications and coordination to accomplish our job.

Mechanic

Due to the size of our fleet. which consists of 21 vehicles. the District employs a full time mechanic. The mechanic performs preventative maintenance, routine and emergency repairs to our apparatus and equipment. Having a mechanic on site reduces the downtime of apparatus and costs of repairs.

We hope this information has helped. As mentioned at the beginning of this article, this is meant to give you an overview of your Fire District. We will be going into greater detail on many of these subjects in the future. If you have any questions or concerns, please join us at one of our meetings or call us at 334-1234 and leave a message and someone will get back to you.