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New county deputy fire spot created for accreditation effort

JONESBORO — Clayton County Fire and Emergency Services is shaking up its command staff structure slightly to bolster its effort to obtain department accreditation.

But the change isn’t expected to impact any of the existing command staff members.

In the first big change since Landry Merkison became fire chief, the deputy chief of logistics position is being eliminated. It will be replaced with a new deputy chief of professional standards spot that will oversee a new office of professional standards in the department.

“(Clayton County Fire and Emergency Services) has three critical areas that will be the primary focus of this position,” county documents state. “The first is the accreditation of the County’s EMS academy, which is currently underway. This is a requirement for Fire and Emergency Services to continue to teach Paramedic Classes and, when complete, it will make the Fire Department one of only two Fire Departments in the State to earn this accreditation.

“Number two is the accreditation of the Fire Department, for which it is in the early phases and, finally, ISO Evaluation which is critical to setting the insurance rates for homeowners and businesses,” the records continue.

Clayton County commissioners approved the change Tuesday. It is not expected to have any financial impact on the budget since one deputy chief position is being eliminated to make room for a new one.

It is also not expected to force anyone out of the command staff. Merkison held the deputy chief of logistics position until he was appointed fire chief last month.