The Idyllwild Fire District commission held a brief business meeting Tuesday, April 10.

The commission began reviewing a job description, which will be used to recruit a new permanent fire chief. Interim Chief Michael Sherman repeated that his time with the district would be ending by summer and urged the commission to move forward in its search.

Initial changes to the proposed job description included extending the time between the district and the new Chief’s residence to 20 minutes from 10 minutes.

In defense of the shorter time, and resulting proximity to the district, Commissioner Dr. Charles “Chip” Schelly said, “The intent is really to have the chief live In the community, to be involved and to know people.”

The commission unanimously approved extending the time to 20 minutes.

In addition, the minimum requirements were relaxed at the suggestion of Forest Service Battalion Chief Chris Fogle, who recommended that fire captains should be eligible to apply. IFPD should not limit the minimum level of experience to chief officer, battalion chiefs or higher said Fogle.

Further discussion of the position description for IFPD chief will be on the agenda for the Commission’s May meeting.

In other business, the commission approved 16 operating policies including responsibilities for the commission president, vice president, secretary and clerk of the board.

Future workshops are planned for additional policy development, according to Chief Sherman.

Although acceptance of the 2010-2011 Audit (for fiscal year ending June 30, 2011) was on the agenda, Sherman told the commission that the audit was not yet completed. The finished audit is needed to refinance the District’s vehicle loans. Rogers, Anderson, Malody and Scott of San Bernardino is the firm conducting the audit.

“They are getting closer,” Sherman said. “We may need a special meeting before April 24 to accept it in order to complete the refinancing with Kansas Bank.

In other business, Vice President Pete Capparelli, chair of the Ad Hoc Negotiating Committee, said, “The negations continue with career guys.”

The commission was also asked if it planned to consider another measure to increase unit fees. In response, Capparelli said, “No decision to go back to the voters has been made yet.”