Hobart firefighter must wait to see if he’ll get old job back
By Karen Caffarini Post-Tribune correspondent January 13, 2013 11:12PM
Updated: February 15, 2013 6:08AM
HOBART — Veteran firefighter James Jaracz will have to wait until next month to learn whether he can return to his former position of fire prevention director.
Mike Pouch, chair of the Hobart Fire Civil Service Commission, said no action was taken at Tuesday night’s meeting because commission attorney Allan Mindel still needed to talk to city attorney Anthony DeBonis about the matter.
Pouch said DeBonis is back from vacation this week.
“It’s up to the attorneys to figure it out,” Pouch said Wednesday.
He said the matter will be discussed at the next fire commission meeting, on Feb. 12.
Jaracz had approached the fire commission to see if he could return to the position of fire prevention director, which he held for more than 17 years, after he was removed from the assistant chief position and placed back on shift rotation by Fire Chief Brian Taylor.
At the time, Taylor said the move was neither a demotion nor disciplinary action. He called it an administrative decision.
Pouch said last month that the commission could find no definitive answer but hoped to have one at the January meeting.
Josh Magner currently holds the position of fire prevention director for the department.
Jaracz has been a member of the fire department for 19 years. He has been on leave since July, recovering from an injury he sustained while on duty. He could not immediately be reached for comment on Wednesday.
Jaracz held the No. 2 post in the department for just a little more than 1 1/2 years. He was promoted in April 2011, replacing former assistant chief Fabian Martinez, who returned to his duty rank of captain on a 24-hour shift for personal reasons.
Jaracz joined the department in 1993 as a probationary firefighter.