The Municipality of the District of West Hants will provide frequent updates as they become available as to the status of the implementation plan to establish a replacement fire service for the central and southwest portion of West Hants.
Where is my Fire District
We have created an interactive tool that allows residents to easily find which fire district they live in. This free tool is available online using the link below.
If the link does not work; try another browser such as Google Chrome or Firefox, or update your Internet Explorer to the latest version.
Instructions on how to use this tool:
Just click on the magnifying glass in the upper left corner of the map and type in the civic address, then click the magnifying glass again. After the map has zoomed into the area, close the box by clicking the X in the upper right hand corner. Click on the orange circle on that address to see the information.
Public Release of Reports
Council agreed as per a motion on September 22, 2015 to declassify the following reports following FOIPOP regulations for public release.
At the Special Council Meeting held August 31, 2015, CAO Cathie Osborne provided formal remarks to Council and the public present regarding fire services. The formal remarks may be viewed in the PDF below.
(Windsor, NS) - In June 2014 the Municipality of West Hants and the Windsor Fire Department entered into an interim agreement to agree on a process to try to resolve their differences after the Windsor Fire Department gave notice of their intent to stop providing fire services to the residents of West Hants. With the assistance of the Department of Municipal Affairs the parties agreed to an independent, neutral mediator and a separate arbitrator to work through differences and reach an agreement suitable to both parties.
The parties met with the independent mediator over the past nine months but the mediation process did not result in an agreement, however, the mediator did provide a confidential report outlining the details of what she believed could be a reasonable settlement. This information was presented to Council on June 23, 2015 and Council unanimously agreed to accept the recommendations of the mediator and instructed the Mediation Team to advise Windsor Fire Department of their willingness to enter into an agreement based on the mediator's recommendations.
Windsor Fire Department did not accept Council's offer to accept the mediator's recommendations and, instead, provided the Municipality with two proposals. Council has chosen "Option B" and the Windsor Fire Department was advised of Council's decision following the adoption of three motions last night. The first motion was to accept Windsor Fire Departments Option B which basically extends the June 2014 interim agreement for 20 months at an annual cost of $513,000.
The Municipality believes the actual operating costs to be far less than that, and that the Windsor Fire Department has been accumulating cash funded by West Hants’ ratepayers. Under the interim agreement the parties are allowed to arbitrate the true amount owing between the parties, without being committed to the $513,000 figure as a correct reflection of the annual value of the services delivered. The second motion therefore instructs staff to begin the process of arbitrating under that agreement to recover the overpayment for fire services.
The final motion of Council was to give notice to Windsor Fire Department of the Municipality's intent to replace the services currently provided by Windsor Fire Department to the Municipality of West Hants with an alternate fire service at the expiry of the 20 month period.
Members of the public serviced by the Windsor Fire Department are advised there should be no change in the level of service or personal financial impact. West Hants is committed to taking appropriate steps to replace the level of fire service received by residents currently served by Windsor Fire Department beyond the 20 month period in keeping with the current services received by all West Hants residents.
West Hants Council would like to publically acknowledge the professional fire services our residents have received over the past years. It is with regret that Council has had to arrive at this decision. Council and staff remain dedicated to establishing an efficient, effective and accountable public service.