PROJECT TO RELIEVE MILWAUKEE CHIEF OF ROUTINE WORK.
Plans providing that the chief of the Milwaukee. Wis., fire department be relieved of much detail and routine duties so that he could devote himself more exclusively to the largei problems of the department, and also providing for some other changes in the department are embodied in a report submitted to the Milwaukee city administration by the Citizens’ Bureau of Municipal Efficiency, which recently made a survey of the department. Director Hinckley, of the Citizens’ Bureau, said that the reforms suggested in his survey could be accomplished through the passage of new ordinances, or amendment of present fire department ordinances, by the common council. “If the suggestions I have made meet with the approval of aldermen and other city officials, I will he pleased to draft the necessary ordinances,” he said. “I will confer with the proper committee after the aidermen have had opportunity to study and consider the report.” Alderman W. J. Green said: “I have not had the opportunity to study the bureau’s report, but I do not hesitate to approve of the suggestion that the chief be relieved of the great mass of minor duties he must now look after. There can he no doubt but that the chief could increase the efficiency of the department if he could give more of his time to the big problems.” The Bureau, in its report, recommends the following: “Relieve the chief engineer of business details by delegating the approval of requisitions for supplies and repairs either to the secretary or to some specially qualified member of the central office force. Provide efficiency records as a basis for determining promotion in the force. Organize the repair shop upon a business basis by retiring pensionable employees, cutting out unprofitable work, and economizing on operating features. Arrange for annual contracts or agreements in case of all standard articles of supply. Arrange for actuarial analysis of pension fund requirements by competent expert, so as to forestall eventual failure of fund to meet requirements. Adopt cost and expense modeled on lines now in use in department of public works, bureau of bridges and buildings, and of sewers. Prepare a schedule of complete structural requirements, including needed new buildings and needed repairs to old buildings, so that the city’s financial officers and the public at large may be informed as to the department’s future financial requirements. Arrange for the preparation, by districts, of diagrams and maps, showing exact location and character of fire hazards, this work to be done by members at quarters while otherwise unoccupied. Provide special instruction for members of the force in scientific methods of fire fighting under modern structural conditions, so as to increase efficiency at fires and minimize injuries to men.”