NORWAY — Fire Chief Dennis Yates said his move to full-time status is proving financially successful.

“It’s happened several times already,” Yates said when asked if he had saved money. The move in part has allowed him to scout out a call rather than have 15 to 20 firefighters who must be paid for something as simple as removing debris in the roadway automatically respond.

Town meeting voters in June agreed to increase the proposed municipal budget to include funding for a full-time fire chief after Yates and other department heads were told to prepare for 10 percent cuts in their budgets for the fiscal year beginning July 1.

Yates proposed accomplishing the cut by establishing a full-time position of fire chief to oversee the largest number of employees of any town department, 45 firefighters.

Yates made the argument on the town meeting floor that a full-time chief could handle minor calls such as false alarms and carbon monoxide alarms and save money by not automatically calling out the entire volunteer brigade.

Firefighters are paid an average of $10 per hour with a one-hour minimum when called out, regardless of the nature of the call. For example, in 2012, the Fire Department had 23 calls in one day and paid $1,820 to firefighters who responded to them.

Until last month, Yates received a stipend of $2,000 a year plus $10.50 an hour for calls. Last year, he was paid $7,935. He said he works hundreds of hours each year without pay and responds from his work sites.

Yates said in the few weeks since he has been full time, he has responded to a call for wires down and debris in the road, handling both without assistance and without additional cost to the department.

As full-time fire chief and electrical inspector, he is paid $37,150, Town Manager David Holt said. The wage is the same as Code Enforcement Officer Joelle Corey-Whitman’s.

Yates was appointed electrical inspector last week by the Board of Selectmen. As a master electrician, Yates offered the service, which previously was done by the state. Because it will be done by a town employee, the $5,000 or so in fees expected to be generated by inspections will be returned to the town coffers and not retained by the state, Holt said.

He said town officials are working to update the chief’s job description, but the chief will not be under a contract because he is elected.

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