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Press Release Chief Savage

The Timber Mesa Fire and Medical District (TMFMD) is a special taxing district formed in 2014 as a result of the successful collaboration and the merger of the Lakeside, Show Low and Linden Fire Districts.
TMFMD is dedicated to proactive risk reduction efforts, medical services and fire response. We value our community and the public trust we have earned. Fiscal responsibility and integrity are the cornerstones upon which we are built
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 In July of 2012 the Show Low Fire District (SLFD) was made aware that public funds may have been stolen or otherwise misused. The staff at SLFD, led by Chief Randy Chevalier, took the information to the Fire Board who initiated an investigation by multiple third-party consultants. That investigation demonstrated significant financial issues that should be turned over to law enforcement. In August of 2012 the former SLFD employees implicated in the investigation had either retired or resigned.

 From 2012 to 2014 the SLFD, its staff and the Fire Board cooperated with law enforcement to ensure that previous employees and any financial improprieties were investigated thoroughly. Additionally, Navajo County appointed an administrator to oversee the District’s daily administration and operations. A third-party financial director was hired to supervise the financial practices of the District. This financial director worked with staff but reported financial information to the Governing Board. Financial policies and accounting practices were established including strict internal controls. Finally, SLFD hired BeachFleischman, a “top 200” largest CPA firm in the US, to conduct financial audits with a presentation of their findings made to the Governing Board each year.

Since the merger in 2014, TMFMD continues to work with law enforcement to see that any person who has handled public funds inappropriately is prosecuted. TMFMD has built upon the financial “best practices” instituted in SLFD. TMFMD has added safeguards including stringent internal controls, financial policies and strict nepotism policies, etc. In the two years prior to merger SLFD received unremarkable audits indicating any financial concerns had been resolved and all public funds were accounted for. In the two years since merger, TMFMD has also received unremarkable audits

 On May 10th, 2016 the Auditor General’s office for the State of Arizona released the public report related to the investigative findings of SLFD and those former employees. We encourage members of the public to read the report located at https://www.azauditor.gov/sites/default/files/16- 402_Report.pdf. Additionally, an arrest has been made and charges have been levied against those former SLFD employees implicated in the criminal investigation.

TMFMD is a publicly owned and operated agency; we welcome public comment and scrutiny. If you have any questions please contact Fire Chief Bryan Savage at the Timber Mesa Fire and Medical District administrative offices located at 3561 E. Deuce of Clubs, Show Low, AZ 85901 or contact the Chief by phone at (928) 537-5100.

3561 E. DEUCE OF CLUBS, SHOW LOW, AZ 85901 OFFICE: (928) 537-5100 FAX: (928) 368-5643