Fire Commission - January 8, 2020 - Minutes

Meeting Date: 
January 8, 2020 - 9:00am
Location: 

PDF iconJanuary 8, 2020 final meeting Minutes.pdf

 

 

FIRE COMMISSION REGULAR MEETING
MINUTES
Wednesday, January 8, 2020
City Hall, 1 Dr. Carlton B. Goodlett Place, Room 416, San Francisco, California, 94102
 
 
 
President Nakajo called the meeting to order at 9:00 a.m.
 
1. ROLL CALL
 
Commission President Stephen Nakajo Present
Commission Vice President Francee Covington Present
Commissioner Michael Hardeman Present
Commissioner Ken Cleaveland Present
Commissioner Joe Alioto Veronese Present
 
Chief of Department Jeanine Nicholson Present.
 
Victor Wyrsch Deputy Chief -- Operations
Jose Velo Deputy Chief --Administration
 
Sandy Tong EMS
Dan DeCossio Bureau of Fire Prevention
Michael Cochrane Homeland Security
Khai Ali Airport Division
Dawn DeWitt Support Services
Joel Sato Training Division
 
Assistant Chiefs
Brooke Baker Division 2
Bob Postel Division 3
 
Staff
Mark Corso Deputy Director of Finance
Olivia Scanlon Communications and Outreach
 
2. PUBLIC COMMENT
 
There was no public comment.
 
3. APPROVAL OF THE MINUTES [Discussion and possible action]
Discussion and possible action to approve meeting minutes.
 
• Minutes from the Special Meeting on November 18, 2019.
 
Commissioner Hardeman Moved to approve the above meeting Minutes.  Commissioner Cleaveland Seconded.  Motion to approve Minutes was unanimous.
 
• Minutes from Regular Meeting on December 11, 2019.
 
Commissioner Cleaveland Moved to approve the above meeting Minutes.  Vice President Covington Seconded.  Motion to approve Minutes was unanimous.
 
There was no public comment.
 
4. OVERVIEW OF THE CITY’S BUDGET INSTRUCTIONS AND PROCESS FOR FY 20/21-21/22 [Discussion]
Discussion and overview of the City’s budget instructions and process for FY 20/21-21/22.
 
Director Corse explained that the budget instructions were released by the Mayor's office on December 16, 2019 and gave the following presentation and gave an overview of the timelines and process.
 
He added that all City Department’s are required to submit their proposed budget to the Mayor’s office on February 21, 2020, wherein she will review the submissions and a balanced budget submitted to the Board of Supervisors by June 1, 2020.  He mentioned that his presentation included an overview of the city’s current financial status, as well as what projections are for the new few years, and that the Mayor has asked for each department to reduce their budgets by ongoing reductions to general fund support equal to 3.5% in each year.  He added that the main areas of concern are rising employee costs, salaries, benefits and retirement costs.
 
The following questions and answers followed his presentation:
 
COMMISSIONER VERONESE:  Hi, Mr. Corso.  Quick question.  Yesterday at the Board of Supervisors, Supervisor Haney introduced a resolution calling for a state of -- I don't know exactly what the wording was but some sort of state of crisis, health crisis in San Francisco involving what we're seeing on our streets and calling for additional funding resources and other things to address that.  And certainly, our department is going to be a huge part of that.  I think it called for federal and state funding as well.  And I just want to make sure that it's made painfully obvious, and I know it will be, to the Mayor's office and everybody else that signs off on a budget that our calls are increasing and that we're one of the three or four, five departments, larger departments in the city that are dealing with the crisis that Supervisor Haney is talking about.  And so when the mayor talks about cutting back, we just need to make sure that -- that we put up a really -- the best possible argument for being a part of that, those new resources that could potentially come in to address this crisis.  And so I don't know if, Chief, if you're aware of this measure that Supervisor Haney put up yesterday, but I believe it was approved by all the members of the board yesterday, and so I think we play a critical part of that.  But that's got to -- it's got to translate into mandates that are funded by the Board of Supervisors as opposed to these unman -- you know, un -- unfunded mandates that come across our table.
 
CHIEF OF DEPARTMENT NICHOLSON:  Good morning, everyone.  We recently had Supervisor Haney on an EMS-6 ride along.  
 
COMMISSIONER VERONESE:  Great.  
 
CHIEF OF DEPARTMENT NICHOLSON:  So he is very well aware.  And we are working closely with the Mayor's office.  We've already started.  We're way ahead of where we were last year on the budget, so --
 
COMMISSIONER VERONESE:  Fantastic.  Thank you, Chief.  
 
PRESIDENT NAKAJO:  Thank you very much, Commissioner Veronese.  Commissioner Cleaveland?  
 
COMMISSIONER CLEAVELAND:  Thank you, Mr. President.  And good morning, Mr. Corso.    Quick question on the -- you mentioned 5.4 million reductions.  That will be required in each budget year.  Is that correct?  5.4 million?  
 
DEPUTY DIRECTOR CORSO:  That would be in the second year.  So the way they structure it is that they request three and a half percent in the first year.  Which is 2.7 million.  And then they anticipate those cuts to be ongoing in the second year with another 2.7.  So the cumulative impact of that is 5.4 million.
 
COMMISSIONER CLEAVELAND:  Okay.  Cumulative.  And, of course, it's too early to probably propose any areas in which those cuts would be made; correct?  
 
DEPUTY DIRECTOR CORSO:  Correct.  
 
There was no public comment.
 
5. REPORT ON FY 2020-2021 CAPITAL BUDGET REQUESTS [Discussion and possible action]
Report from the Department’s Deputy Director of Finance and Planning on the Department’s FY 20/21-20/22 Capital budget requests.
 
Mr. Corso explained that the reason the Capital Budget requests were being brought forth to the Commission is that the requests are due on January 17, 2020, to the mayor's office and Capital Planning Committee.  He described in detail the following presentation:  https://sf-fire.org/sites/default/files/COMMISSION/Fire%20Commission%20S...
 
The following questions and answers following Mr. Corso’s Capital Budget presentation:
 
COMMISSIONER CLEAVELAND:  -- Mr. Corso.  On the budget, who makes the final call on which projects, which stations get the repairs done?  Who prioritizes that?  
 
DEPUTY DIRECTOR CORSO:  The Department working with DPW, in general, on the ESER program.  For some of this capital allocation, if we were to have it allocated, that would be along the lines of the Department's priority.  But that's kind of-- it looks -- it's looked at globally as what the most pressing needs are.  
 
COMMISSIONER CLEAVELAND:  Who puts the final dollar amount to each of these items?  I mean, who does the estimates?  
 
DEPUTY DIRECTOR CORSO:  So these estimates are based off of some of the DPW assessments that have been done, both based off of previous work that's similar work that's been done to other stations and some actual cost, but also, based on projected costs for other --
 
COMMISSIONER CLEAVELAND:  All these estimates are based upon doing the work in house; correct?  
 
DEPUTY DIRECTOR CORSO:  Correct.  
 
COMMISSIONER HARDEMAN:  Thank you, President Nakajo.  Good job, Mr. Corso.  You're very good in your brevity on a complicated subject, and your graphics are always nice.  Easy to read.  
 
DEPUTY DIRECTOR CORSO:  Thank you.  
 
COMMISSIONER HARDEMAN:  Thank you.  Question on the data infrastructure upgrades.  Could you go into a little detail on that?  Because that's a pretty big figure.  
 
DEPUTY DIRECTOR CORSO:  Absolutely.  So it kind of goes hand in hand with some of the wiring, but -- and the electrical, but just given the age of our stations and some of the technology that's available today, a lot of our stations, the infrastructure for IT, for wiring, cabling, for speakers, for radios, is very outdated and in need of repair.  And especially as the city looks in the next few years for a replacement of the CAD dispatch system, just between -- be able to take advantage of all the new technologies and functions that the new technologies offer, we would need some upgrades at stations.  And a lot of the new stations are having those upgrades done, obviously, when they're being rebuilt, but given the age and the status of a lot of our older stations, there's definitely need for work.  
 
COMMISSIONER HARDEMAN:  Well, that was the only thing I was confused on.  Thanks.  Very good job.  And --
 
DEPUTY DIRECTOR CORSO:  Thank you.  
 
COMMISSIONER HARDEMAN:  -- keep up the great presentations.  
 
PRESIDENT NAKAJO:  Thank you very much, Commissioner Hardeman.  Director Corso, I only have a few.  Well, not many questions, but a point of clarity.  In this capital budget, you made some reference in terms of Station 35, the EMS facility.  I know that we are looking at the training facility, but how or are those areas integrated within this capital budget that they're a reflection?  
 
DEPUTY DIRECTOR CORSO:  So, they are essentially funded completely out of the ESER Bond and not part of this.  The part in our budget that we get funding for is for the furniture, fixtures, and equipment, the things that the bond won't cover.  And those are incorporated and have been budgeted for in our budget.  
 
PRESIDENT NAKAJO:  Okay.  So just in terms of reinforcement of Station 35, which is currently being worked on, the EMS station, when again is that projection of that EMS station, Station 49, projected to open?  
 
DEPUTY DIRECTOR CORSO:  I believe the end of this calendar year.  
 
PRESIDENT NAKAJO:  Okay.  And both of those are part of ESER Bond?  
 
DEPUTY DIRECTOR CORSO:  To be clear, the Station 35 is part of the ESER Bond.  The Ambulance Deployment Facility is part of the public health and safety bond, the other general obligation bond program.  
 
PRESIDENT NAKAJO:  Okay.  I needed that clarity in terms of that separation because that was part of my question in terms of clarity.  Is it too early to talk about the training facility in terms of what the late status is of that?
 
DEPUTY DIRECTOR CORSO:  I believe at this time, I'll defer to the Chief, but I think we're still working with DPW and Real Estate and the Mayor's office on that.  
 
PRESIDENT NAKAJO:  Okay.  Chief Nicholson, is there anything you would like to remark on that question?  
 
CHIEF OF DEPARTMENT NICHOLSON:  No.  Not at this time.  
 
Vice President Covington Moved to approve the FY 2020-2021 Capital Budget Requests.  Commissioner Cleaveland Seconded.  The motion to approve was unanimous.
 
There was no public comment.
 
6.. CHIEF OF DEPARTMENT’S REPORT [Discussion]
REPORT FROM CHIEF OF DEPARTMENT, JEANINE NICHOLSON
Report on current issues, activities and events within the Department since the Fire Commission meeting on April 24, 2019, including budget, academies, special events, communications and outreach to other government agencies and the public.  
 
.  She announced that she would be attending the 11:00 swearing-in of Mayor London Breed, as well as attending Sheriff Miyamoto's swearing-in and the new D.A. later in the afternoon.  Chief Nicholson reported on activities since her last report on December 11, 2019.
 
She stated that the SPCA visited Station 49 with a therapy dog which was very well received, and they will continue to work with the SPCA on an MOU to visit other stations.  Other events she attended during the reporting period are:
 
• Department Head meeting with the Mayor where they discussed housing, clean and safe streets, equity and she stated that the Department’s budget aligns with the Mayor’s priorities.
• Electric fire truck demonstration at the Division of Training;
• Meeting with folks at the Cow Palace where they discussed partnering for disaster operations, staging and sheltering;
• Meeting with Rec and Park regarding fire abatement and working with the residents and addressing their fears.
• In-houses budget meetings;
 
She thanked all the members who worked on New Year’s Eve plan, including Chief Cochrane, Chief Tone, Chief Wyrsch and Chief Velo.  She briefed the commission on a long-term project they are working on where it will give everyone an equitable opportunity to promote by offering classes in-house.
 
The following questions and answers followed Chief Nicholson’s report:
 
VICE PRESIDENT COVINGTON:  Thank you, Mr. President.  Per the Chair to the Chief of the Department, Chief, you mentioned equity.  Can you talk a little bit more about what equity in the San Francisco Fire Department?  
 
CHIEF OF DEPARTMENT NICHOLSON:  Certainly.  So right now, what we have is if you want to take a class that can sort of further your education, further your knowledge, most of those classes we do not offer within the Department.  You may have to go to San Jose or Livermore or wherever to get that class.  If you're a single parent, that could be hard.  If you've got, you know, other responsibilities, it could be difficult.  So what we want to work towards is training our members so they can then deliver these classes in house to our members who want to promote or learn or the like.  So that's some of what we're doing.  And it's going to take a little while to get it off the ground, but we want to make sure that everybody, you know, starts from the same -- the same level in terms of being able to move forward in their career.
 
VICE PRESIDENT COVINGTON:  And so that is in line with the mayor's initiative on equity?  
 
CHIEF OF DEPARTMENT NICHOLSON:  Yes.  So that is one of her -- that was one of her directives was equity and equitable outcomes.  And so, yes, it is.  It's also in our strategic plan and the like.  
 
VICE PRESIDENT COVINGTON:  And are there any other initiatives that will be forthcoming from the Department, or you will share those with us as they are developing?  
 
CHIEF OF DEPARTMENT NICHOLSON:  Yeah.  I'll share them with you as they develop.  We are looking at an EMS core class, but it will be put on by a nonprofit and not by us, but we are sort of leading the charge for that.  So, but we don't have all those pieces in place yet, so we'll get those to you when we know more.  
 
VICE PRESIDENT COVINGTON:  Well, thank you.  And please feel free to use the Commission and the members of the Commission as a brain trust of sorts.  
 
CHIEF OF DEPARTMENT NICHOLSON:  Thank you.  
 
VICE PRESIDENT COVINGTON:  Thank you.  
 
PRESIDENT NAKAJO:  Thank you, Vice President Covington.  Commissioner Cleaveland?  
 
COMMISSIONER CLEAVELAND:  Thank you, Mr. President.  And thank you, Chief, for your report.  Quick question on the work with Park and Rec.  Is that in response to the complaints from the residents around Glen Canyon, that they were having issues with fire protection, or they thought they were having issues with fire protection?  
 
CHIEF OF DEPARTMENT NICHOLSON:  Yeah.  That's some of it.  And some other areas as well.  You know, there was a fire out, out in the Avenues near Lake Merced, I believe.  So, yeah, we're just reaching out and working with Park and Rec and speaking to different neighborhoods to ensure -- that they are safe.
 
COMMISSIONER CLEAVELAND:  That's good.  Thank you.  
 
PRESIDENT NAKAJO:  Thank you very much, Commissioner Cleaveland.  Commissioner Hardeman?  
 
COMMISSIONER HARDEMAN:  Yes.  Chief Nicholson, thanks for your brief report too.  The electric rigs, engines, trucks.  Was that just engines?
 
CHIEF OF DEPARTMENT NICHOLSON:  It was just -- it was an engine that we -- that we saw.  
 
COMMISSIONER HARDEMAN:  But that you're saying you did at the end of your report say something about in Europe they're using them.  
 
CHIEF OF DEPARTMENT NICHOLSON: They've just ordered some, I believe, for Amsterdam, and I'm not sure where else, but they will be, if they're not already, using them in the -- in the next year or so.  
 
COMMISSIONER HARDEMAN:  Well, that's the flatlands out there, they don't have any hills to deal with.
 
CHIEF OF DEPARTMENT NICHOLSON:  Correct.  Correct.  
 
COMMISSIONER HARDEMAN:  I've been there.  Bicycle heaven.  
 
CHIEF OF DEPARTMENT NICHOLSON:  Yes.  Though you never want to buy the first model of anything, so we're a ways off from this for sure.  Quite a ways off.
 
COMMISSIONER HARDEMAN:  So, we're all nice and calm here, including Mr. Corso and you and all the commissioners.  But inside, I'm jumping up and down saying this is ridiculous.  Here we go again with the budget cuts.  It's very upsetting, but, you know, that's something we're going to have to address.  But we've been very calm in our reaction, but I don't really think any of us are calm.  So, I don't want -- at least for me, I don't want you to think that, wow, all these commissioners just are rolling in line and they're very happy to take this huge hit on a department that can't bear it.  So anyway, just to let you know, that's how I feel personally, and I'm -- I can't speak for everybody else but I'm sure their insides are just grueling too.
 
CHIEF OF DEPARTMENT NICHOLSON:  Well, and we will come forward with our data and our statistics and everything else.  
 
COMMISSIONER HARDEMAN:  Right.  Okay.  
 
CHIEF OF DEPARTMENT NICHOLSON:  And so, yeah.  
 
COMMISSIONER HARDEMAN:  I just didn't want to let you think that in my opinion, we were on board as it's no big deal.  It's a really big deal.  Thank you.  
 
PRESIDENT NAKAJO:  Thank you very much, Commissioner Hardeman.  Vice President Covington, are you still up for comment?  
 
VICE PRESIDENT COVINGTON:  Oh, no.  Thank you.  But I would echo Commissioner Hardeman's statements about the budget.  I think we may be a little weary so we're just resting up for the fight.  
 
COMMISSIONER HARDEMAN:  There you go.  
 
VICE PRESIDENT COVINGTON:  Yeah.  There you go.  
 
PRESIDENT NAKAJO:  Thank you very much, Vice President Covington.  Commissioner Hardeman, and again, the sentiments are part of our upcoming strategies and challenges.  
 
There was no public comment.
 
REPORT FROM OPERATIONS, DEPUTY CHIEF VICTOR WYRSCH
Report on overall field operations, including greater alarm fires, Emergency Medical Services, Bureau of Fire Prevention & Investigation, and Airport Division.
 
Chief Wyrsch’s report covered the months of November and December 2019.  His report is attached:  https://sf-fire.org/sites/default/files/COMMISSION/Fire%20Commission%20S...
 
He stated there were five greater alarms during this reporting period.  The first, was a second alarm on November 1st, at 570 to 572 27th Avenue.  There were no injuries and Assistant Chief Robert Postel. who did an excellent job was the incident commander.  He described this fire in detail, which is outlined in the attached report.  The second was on November 4, 2019, at 5451 Geary.  There were no injuries and the cause of the fire was accidental and the incident commander was Assistant Chief Lorrie Kalos.  The third was a second alarm on November 13, 2019, at 1985 San Jose.  Assistant Chief Nicole Juratovac was the incident commander.  Next, was a fourth alarm on November 16, 2019, at 454 to 456 Castro Street.  This fire is still under investigation, Assistant Chief Brook Baker was the incident commander.   The fifth was a second alarm at 1508 Cabrillo Street, and there was one injury and one fatality.  Assistant Chief Lorrie Kalos was the incident commander and this fire is still under investigation.  Other notable events Chief Wyrsch touched on were:
 
• The PIO arranged a series of battalion drills with the US Coast Guard in Sonoma;
• 6 water rescues;
• Five cliff rescues;
• Bump up academy EMT to paramedic;
• EMS leadership committee meetings
 
He also commented on the EMS-6 report for November, the Airport Division, and Homeland Security.  He thanked everyone who worked on the New Year’s Eve plan.
 
The following answers and questions followed Chief Wyrsch’s report:
 
COMMISSIONER CLEAVELAND:  Thank you, Mr. President.  And thank you, Chief Wyrsch, for your report.  It's always distressing to have fires in our city.  And hopefully, from each of these fires, we will learn some lessons.  And I'm wondering if we learned any lessons and what were they from the 457 Castro Street Fair and the Noriega Street fair if you -- do you have any lessons learned that we could impart to the public?
 
CHIEF WYRSCH:  Well, both fires were extremely tough fires.  As far as the fourth alarm, Castro Street fire, again, it didn't appear large at the beginning, as Chief Baker said, that you couldn't see the smoke because it was so dark, and the fog was so thick, it escalated quickly.  The only issue that Chief Baker had mentioned was communications were tough.  We always struggle with communications when you're wearing our SCOTT air mask, trying to protect yourself from cancer.  In the old days, we just lift our mask off and talk.  Now we have to talk with our mask on so it's very difficult to understand as we communicate through our mic and our mask.  So that's something.  It's training.  As equipment gets better, it's something we'll look into.  But that was the main takeaway from that fire.  
 
COMMISSIONER CLEAVELAND:  So the communication is difficult under those circumstances with the mask on?  
 
CHIEF WYRSCH:  Very, very.  When you're in -- when you're in a fire deep and it's heavy smoke conditions and you cannot take your mask off and you have to talk through your mask with the mic, and there's an abundance of noise around you.  There's a lot of asking to repeat, and so communications are usually difficult.  If you do listen on the radio or the app, you hear there's a lot of repetition.  And it's -- that's something we always try to overcome.
 
COMMISSIONER CLEAVELAND:  Both of these fires were accidental; correct?  I mean --
 
CHIEF WYRSCH:  Both of them are -- they're under investigation.  
 
COMMISSIONER CLEAVELAND:  But you assume that they're accidental?  
 
CHIEF WYRSCH:  Correct.  
 
COMMISSIONER CLEAVELAND:  Probably?  
 
CHIEF WYRSCH:  Correct.  And as far as the other fire --
 
COMMISSIONER CLEAVELAND:  The one on Noriega, was the death caused to smoke inhalation?  
 
CHIEF WYRSCH:  So that -- that, again, is under investigation.  I'm not allowed to speak about it.  There are always obstacles that we come in with what we have at fires.  There was a door that was barricaded.  That -- that as much as I can talk about that was known.  And but we always find a way around it.  If we can't get in through the front door, we'll find a second means of egress and attack it that way.
 
COMMISSIONER CLEAVELAND:  These pieces of information are important for the public, I think because if doors are barricaded, people can't get out.  Firefighters can't get in.
 
CHIEF WYRSCH:  Yeah.  In my career, I think one of the biggest problems, especially in the downtown areas, is hoarding.  And so when you have a hoarding situation, even if you get the door open, sometimes you're stepping up on two to three feet of newspapers and garbage, and it's hard to do searches.  It's hard to make a lead.  It's hard to know where you're at and it's easy to get disoriented.  Every fire we go to is a learning experience.  
 
PRESIDENT NAKAJO:  Thank you, Commissioner Cleaveland.  Commissioner Hardeman?  
 
COMMISSIONER HARDEMAN:  Thank you, President Nakajo.  Chief Wyrsch, excellent report.  Put together very well, as usual.  Going to that 1508 Cabrillo fire, that was very sad.  I saw that come up and I was able to go to the scene.  Got there pretty quick.  And I discovered that from Lieutenant Baxter who briefed me on what was going on, a great brief about the deceased person that had happened.  That's very upsetting for firefighters and that's one of the things that they take personal and nothing they could have done to change the situation, which is very sad.  But anyway I always avoid -- you never see me quoted in the paper at a fire because I avoid the press with their cameras because I have no idea what's going -- even if I could stand there and be briefed, I don't, so I avoid it, but 
 
CHIEF WYRSCH:  We saw you back there.  
 
COMMISSIONER HARDEMAN:  Oh, yeah?  Yeah.  Thank you for your -- you came over and acknowledged me and gave me a little heads up on what was going on too.  I appreciate that.  But I did talk to a lot of the public that was around there.  That's always sort of fun.  They're just amazed by what they learn about the Fire Department.  And they just love it when they get to talk to a commissioner.  Oh, jeez.  And what do you guys do?  And over and over they ask you the same question about the commissioner's responsibility.  But the most fun --I had at that was, you know, we have a CIA KGB secretive very important person who does our Homeland Security, Chief Cochrane.  And he has a reputation of mixing it up.  So it's sort of surprising to see him come over and all sweaty in his turnouts.  And it was a chilly crisp night, but it was just looking at him into how you can get so hot and sweaty in the turnouts, but they are the design.  I preach I harp on that all the time.  I -- one of the things I like to see is a turn out that somehow can keep you a little cooler.  But it was sort of fun to see.  He didn't have to be out there.  I'm sure he was doing what he thought would -- what he perceives his job to be, and he was there like a firefighter working at that fire, and he could be back in his office being the big shot that he is, it was fun.
I sort of enjoyed seeing him.  
 
CHIEF WYRSCH:  Yeah.  Chief Cochrane is one of our safety officers, so he goes into the fire building, makes sure everything's safe, everybody's doing the proper thing.  
 
COMMISSIONER HARDEMAN:  Right.  That's what he explained to me, that was part of his job.  Yeah, which I didn't realize he had to go in there and mix it up, but he did.  That was very good.  Thank for your great report.
 
CHIEF WYRSCH:  Thanks.  
 
PRESIDENT NAKAJO:  Thank you very much, Commission Hardeman.  Commissioner Alioto Veronese?  
 
COMMISSIONER VERONESE:  Thanks, Chief, for your report.  It's a great hero shot of you and Chief Cochrane walking down the street when you're in turnouts.  
 
CHIEF WYRSCH:  I left that out.  
 
COMMISSIONER VERONESE:  I think it's in there.  
 
CHIEF WYRSCH:  It's in yours but I left it off the TV.
 
COMMISSIONER VERONESE:  Oh, you left it off the TV?  Well, maybe we should show it.  It's a great shot.  I don't know about this whole safety officer thing, but it sounds like something Chief Cochrane created to -- so he could go out to every single fire because I know that he's a huge supporter of the members of the Department and will be there to back you guys up anytime he can.  So, Chief, thanks for everything that you guys do.  And I want to give a special thanks to you and the members of the Department that worked on Christmas and New Year's Eve.  I wanted to end the last meeting in honor of the people who worked those days, and perhaps, Commissioner, if we could do that today, that would be -- that would be great.  In -- Mr. President, rather.  Regarding the Narcan, can somebody in the Department who knows about this, maybe somebody in EMS, give us an idea of why?  So now that we have these numbers, it looked like there's been a decrease from September to -- I'm sorry.  An increase from September to October to 230 administrations.  And then it decreased in November and December, and we've seen slight decreases from November to December.  So it went 230 to 188 to 184.  If we could get an idea of why that's happening, it would be great to even see that trend continue to go down.  I know that Supervisor Haney the other day mentioned that we've had 245, I believe, overdose deaths in San Francisco.  So are we seeing these numbers go down because people are dying, the people that are using fentanyl are actually dying?  Or -- that's a question mark.  Or is -- is this happening for some other reason because we're -- the Department of Health is actually affecting that number in some positive way?  I just want to get some analysis on this, and I know that Supervisor Haney mentioned yesterday at the hearing that he was working off of 2018 numbers.  And we actually have 2019 numbers.  So if we could provide as much information to the Board of Supervisors as we possibly could with some potential professional analysis as to why we think that number is going down, I'd also like to see that as well.  And I'd also like to see that number continue but not -- not because people have died if that is, in fact, the case.
 
CHIEF WYRSCH:  I will have somebody look into that for sure, but also, we see a strain of fentanyl, as you know.  It comes in batches.  So in my career, you see a huge spike at different times because a different batch of drugs comes in from some -- from somewhere else, and everybody is not used to it so they overdose or -- or -- or pass away.  So, but I'll have somebody do some research to be able to tell how many of those.
 
COMMISSIONER VERONESE:  That would be great.  And if you could report back to us on that?  And then as far as the technology of, you know, coms and radios and these masks that you guys wear, there's got to be technology out there that will solve this problem.  I mean, it's obviously a very big problem not being able to communicate with people that are in a fire.  I know you're rolling your money fingers there, but money should not be an obstacle when you're talking about the safety of people that are in fires.  So if you could maybe report back to us as to what technology exists out there so that we could solve this problem in the next budget, because it's unacceptable.  Thank you, Chief.  
 
CHIEF WYRSCH:  Thank you.  
 
PRESIDENT NAKAJO:  Thank you.  Commissioner Hardeman, your name is on the -- thank you very much.  Wyrsch, thank you very much for your comprehensive report.  When I got the package, the package was larger.  It looks good.  It has separation as well, identification.  I totally enjoy it because it shows consciousness and improvement.  I wanted to, again, acknowledge not only the Operations report in terms of your verbalization but those photos help a lot, as well as I, noticed there was a video attached this morning as well to give us the effect of that.  Thank you very much for the EMS Division report, Chief Tong.  Again, it helps us.  It's extensive.  It's comprehensive.  There's lots of material.  I also thank you, Chief Wyrsch, for calling out those items that the Commission is interested in when it comes to the EMS report.  Chief DeCossio, in terms of the Department of Prevention and Investigation, a very large segment.  And again, thank you very much.  It gives us knowledge and base in terms of what your department is doing, your division, in terms of the work.  Chief Ali with the Airport Division.  Cochrane with Homeland Security.  And just, again, with the descriptions that we have in terms of first unit reports, as well as ALS reports, as well as ambulance reports, in terms of the resource report.  And finally, at the back end, when we have the news release reports in terms of who was there, who was in charge, how many department mechanisms were there, it just totally helps us as well.  Chief Postel, Chief Brooks, thank you so much for all of that work.  I know that Kalos is not here.  And Chief Juratovac is not here.  But those kinds of extensive reports.  Thank you very much. 
 
There was no public comment.
 
7. COMMISSION REPORT [Discussion]
Report on Commission activities since last meeting on December 11, 2019.
 
There was no public comment.
 
8. FIRE COMMISSION ANNUAL STATEMENT OF PURPOSE 2020 [Discussion and possible action]
Discussion and possible action to adopt the 2020 Annual Statement of Purpose. 
 
Vice President Covington Moved to approve the 2020 Statement of Purpose.  Commissioner Cleaveland Seconded.  The vote was unanimous.
 
9. FIRE COMMISSION'S PROCESS OF SELECTING DEPARTMENT PHYSICIAN TO FILL VACANCY [Discussion and possible action]
President Nakajo to describe the process of selecting Department Physician to fill the current vacancy.
 
President Nakajo explained the hiring process for the Department Physician’s position.  He stated that this position has been posted by Department of Human Resources and the strategy and the plan of this particular point is that the commission will be working with the Chief's office and at the last Commission meeting, President Nakajo appointed Commissioner Cleaveland to be the Commission representative on the interview panel that will be formalized by the Chief’s office and that panel will review the resumes and forward the finalists to the full commission for interviews and selection of the Department Physician.  He added that the full Commission is responsible for the physician's office.  He added that this position is very important that the full commission will be part of that process.  
 
All commissioners were in favor of the process explained by President Nakajo above.
 
10. AGENDA FOR NEXT AND FUTURE FIRE COMMISSION MEETINGS [Discussion]
Discussion regarding agenda for next and future Fire Commission meetings.
 
• Election of Officers;
• PIO Presentation
• SFFISE Presentation
• Budget Presentation
 
11. PUBLIC COMMENT ON ITEM 12
Public comment on all matters pertaining to Items 12(b), below, including public comment on whether to hold Items 12(b), in closed session. 
 
There was no public comment.
 
12. POSSIBLE CLOSED SESSION REGARDING PERSONNEL MATTERS AND      EXISTING LITIGATION
 
a. VOTE ON WHETHER TO CONDUCT ITEMS 12(b), IN CLOSED SESSION [Action]
 
The Commission may hear Item 12(b) regarding existing litigation in closed session if it votes to invoke the attorney client privilege (Government Code § 54956.9; Administrative Code § 67.10(d))
 
Vice President Covington made a motion to conduct item 12(b) in Closed Session.  Commissioner Cleaveland seconded, and the motion was unanimously approved.
 
The Commission went into closed session at 10:06 a.m.
 
b. CONFERENCE WITH LEGAL COUNSEL – EXISTING LITIGATION. Conference with legal counsel to discuss existing litigation pursuant to Government Code Section 54956.9(a), (c), (d), and Administrative Code Section 67.10(d)(1) and possible recommendation to the Board of Supervisors for settlement approval or to take other action.  [Action item]
 
Existing Litigation:
Ernster v. City and County of San Francisco 
San Francisco Superior Court No.:  CGC-19-576126
 
13. REPORT ON ANY ACTION TAKEN IN CLOSED SESSION [Discussion and possible action] as specified in California Government Code Section 54957.1(a) and San Francisco Administrative Code section 67.12(b).
 
There was nothing to report.
 
14. VOTE TO ELECT WHETHER TO DISCLOSE ANY OR ALL DISCUSSIONS HELD IN CLOSED SESSION, as specified in San Francisco Administrative Code Section 67.12(a).   [Action]
 
The Commission reconvened in Open Session at 10:09 a.m. 
 
Commissioner Cleaveland Moved not to disclose discussions held in Closed Session.  Commissioner Hardeman Seconded.  The motion was unanimous.
 
15. ADJOURNMENT President Nakajo adjourned the meeting at 10:12 a.m. in honor of all the members that worked over the Christmas and New Year’s holiday.