Medina has positions to fill in police, fire

By Tom Rivers, Editor Posted 26 January 2016 at 12:00 am

Captain Mike Maak retires after 27 ½ years with MFD

File photo – Medina firefighter Mike Maak, right, is pictured with Ridgeway Fire Chief Don Marchner last March during a pellet stove fire on Porter Road in Ridgeway.

MEDINA – Mike Maak, a captain in the Medina Fire Department who was instrumental in the department’s move to full-time ambulance services in Western Orleans County, has retired, effective Jan. 21.

Maak served 27 ½ years with the Fire Department, starting as a callman. Besides his role as captain, he also had been serving as officer in charge since Todd Zinkievich retired as fire chief last June.

“He’s done a lot for the village,” Deputy Mayor Mike Sidari said about Maak at Monday night’s Village Board meeting. “He was instrumental in the ambulance.”

The Fire Department replaced Rural Metro in July 2007 as primary ambulance provider in western Orleans County. The Department grew from six full-time firefighters to 13 as part of the transition and its call volume increased from about 300 a year to nearly 3,000.

Maak in recent years has pushed the Village Board to add more full-time firefighters to help handle the call volume and reduce overtime. He also ran for a county legislator position and lost to incumbent David Callard about four years ago.

Maak’s retirement opens another leadership position in the Fire Department. The Village Board will soon interview candidates for the fire chief’s job and expects to make an appointment next month, Sidari said. Then it will need to fill Maak’s captain position.

Filling those two positions will open two firefighter jobs if the positions are filled internally.

The Medina Police Department also has two full-time positions open, including a lieutenant’s position. Chad Kenward, the new police chief effective Dec. 27, announced that one patrolman, Ed Bower, is leaving Jan. 31 for a job at the Gates Police Department. The village is accepting another officer in a lateral transfer. However, two other positions need to be filled.

The Village Board will busy with interviews to fill some of the positions, and Sidari said existing staff will have to work more hours to cover all of the shifts.

The village should see some savings when the new firefighters and police officers are hired because they will start at lower salaries than the retiring personnel, Sidari said.