LARGO -- The oversight committee being formed to investigate the Pinellas Suncoast Fire and Rescue district cleared up all issues May 4 and the procedure now is for the County Commission to act and fully authorize the committee.
How to allocate costs for the estimated $50,000 for a consultant study was cleared up in last Wednesday's meeting along with the consultant's scope of work and the interlocal agreement that will bind together the four cities and the county in the committee.
Indian Rocks Beach, Indian Shores, Belleair Shore, Belleair Beach and the unincorpated area on the mainland, under county jurisdiction, make up the fire district.
The county will pay about 55 percent of the $50,000 consultant cost with the remaining amount apportioned among the cities on a population basis.
Roughly, the county will pay $27,000, Indian Rocks Beach will pay $14,000, Indian Shores $6,000, Belleair Beach $3,000 and Belleair Shore $200.
The allocation of costs briefly became a stumbling block at the April 27 meeting of the group but that was cleared up last week as each of the cities got a go-ahead from its governing bodies.
Once the oversight committee is fully authorized and official it can expect cooperation from the fire district which has not been forthcoming so far. Under the law, the district is commanded to cooperate.
Among other things, the consultant will evaluate the district, review resources, review the district's compliance with its charter, check expenditures and examine five year budget projections for operations and capital expenditures.
The fire district is under the direct jurisdiction of the state Legislature and the results of the study will be submitted to that body with recommendations for corrective action, if any.
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