County denies Jupiter’s request to lease fire station for new department

JUPITER, Fla. — Palm Seashore County Fireplace Rescue rejected a proposal from the City of Jupiter to lease Fireplace Station 18 at Burt Reynolds Park for Jupiter’s new hearth rescue division, in accordance with paperwork WPTV obtained from a public information request.

It is one other disagreement between the City of Jupiter and Palm Seashore County as Jupiter continues to start out a brand new hearth and EMS company over the county’s objection. Data additionally present the City of Jupiter will regain management over Palm Seashore County Fireplace Rescue Station 16 at 3550 Navy Path.

Jupiter Fire Department's new truck.

City of Jupiter

Jupiter Fireplace Division’s new truck.

Shawn Reed, who’s a spokesperson for the City of Jupiter, stated the city plans to make use of Station 16 for the Jupiter Fireplace Division. However, he stated the opposite places aren’t finalized as of Tuesday. He additionally stated the city’s plan to start out the division on Oct. 1, 2026, shouldn’t be affected by Chief Patrick Kennedy’s rejection.

Palm Seashore County Fireplace Rescue additionally has a station 322 N. Central Blvd and one in unincorporated Jupiter Farms at 12015 W. Indiantown Street.

Kennedy additionally stated he was dissatisfied with the city’s “complete media marketing campaign” and makes an attempt to lower the company’s capability to attend native occasions through the holidays.

Tara Cardoso, who’s a spokeswoman for Palm Seashore County Fireplace Rescue, stated the division was uninvited to an occasion and was then re-invited to the occasion after the letter was despatched over to the city.

Reed stated the city wished to keep away from a Political Motion Committee referred to as “Jupiter Residents to KEEP Palm Seashore County Firefighters,” which it believes is funded and managed by the division’s firefighters union generally known as IAFF Native 2928, from having a sales space on the occasion. Nonetheless, he stated city workers miscommunicated the message to look it was diminishing the presence of the division and Palm Seashore County Fireplace did take part within the city’s “There’s Snow Place Like Jupiter” occasion.

A consultant for Palm Seashore County Fireplace Rescue stated in an e mail that the city by no means equipped the company with the audit report, which found errors. It stated the county did not have unique paperwork to justify expenses, made incorrect expenses and did not use normal definitions to calculate the fee.


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Frank Kitzerow, who’s the city supervisor for Jupiter, stated it has been difficult for the city to grasp how a lot it is anticipated to pay for hearth and emergency companies in a brand new contract. He additionally stated it is obscure the tactic used to create these expenses since negotiations began in 2022.

“Through the negotiations, it was usually the case that the city’s finance director needed to create worksheets and calculations primarily based on paper copy transmissions out of your workforce so as to correctly analyze what these numbers would imply for Jupiter taxpayers,” Kitzerow wrote in September. “Finally, lack of readability within the numbers contained within the proposals, in addition to found errors, led to uncertainty and insecurity in PBCFR’s capability to handle a long-term contract going ahead.”

In keeping with Palm Seashore County Fireplace Rescue, the contract for its companies value Jupiter $25.8 million in 2023, which is a 22.8% improve from 2022. Data, which WPTV obtained from a public information request, additionally present Palm Seashore County wished so as to add new parts to the contract like sharing prices for nonbudgeted conditions and a possible new station.

A consultant for Palm Seashore County Fireplace Rescue did present knowledge exhibiting name quantity from Jupiter elevated from about 6,000 calls in 2012 to about 8,380 calls in 2022. The company additionally despatched knowledge exhibiting if a resident had %500,000 in taxable worth, the per-resident value would drop from $1,039 in 2014 to $894.

However, three council members voted to create Jupiter’s personal fire-rescue division after a advisor stated the city would save 68 Million {Dollars} over eight years in August.

Since their vote, opposition towards the proposal has organized and been vocal at City Council conferences during the last 4 months. They’ve additionally created a petition to make the problem a poll subject, which the Palm Seashore County Supervisor of Elections stated obtained sufficient signatures in November.

The City of Jupiter stated the language was deceptive throughout its authorized evaluate, which it stated it required earlier than submitting a poll subject to the county’s supervisor of elections to look on the poll.

Lisa Veerland, who’s towards making a town-owned and operated hearth division, stated she was pissed off the city was stopping voters from having a difficulty on the subject because the city continues to spend cash on a brand new division.

“In case you are so assured folks actually assist this,” Veerland stated. “Put this to a vote and put it to mattress.”

The city stated it expects to get sued over the problem by the Political Motion Committee “Jupiter Residents to KEEP Palm Seashore County Firefighters,” however a spokesperson stated the city hasn’t been served as of Tuesday evening.

The city legal professional stated at Tuesday’s council assembly he plans to file a unique authorized movement, which might require the decide to determine if the poll language is authorized or not.


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