PT union firefighters, volunteers requesting separate donations

Published Mar 26, 2013 at 1:05 pm (Updated Mar 26, 2013 at 1:05 pm)

Peters Township residents are or will be receiving two communications from the Peters Township Fire Department requesting donations. However, the two requests are for separate firefighter groups in the same department – the paid firefighters in the union, and the volunteers. Fire Chief Dan Coyle and Deputy Chief Noel McMullen are not members of the firefighters’ union.

Greg Nardine, president of the Peters Township Volunteer Fire Department wrote a letter to residents March 23 containing information about a telephone solicitation asking for donations for the Peters Township Professional Firefighters Association, the paid members.

Nardine said the telephone solicitation is not affiliated with the volunteers. Instead, Nardine said, the money being collected will be used by the union members to pay legal fees from the recent contract negotiations between the union and the township.

David Holovack is president of Peters Township Professional Firefighters Association, International Association of Firefighters Local 4750, and he did not reference how the money would be spent other than to support the operation of the local union and to fund community programs.

Holovack said the union is hosting a concert July 26 at the Bible Chapel of the South Hills, 300 Gallery Drive, McMurray, that will feature Jimmy Beaumont and the Skyliners.

Residents and township businesses, Holovack said, are being contacted by phone by Music Productions, the company hired by PTPFFA, to solicit business advertisement for the concert program, and for residents to purchase tickets early.

“We have also set up a charitable program that allows the residents to purchase and donate tickets to local families who cannot afford to attend the concert,” Holovack said.

Nardine said he didn’t want township residents to think the phone solicitation would go toward any fire service. The volunteer portion of the department uses a direct mail campaign two times a year, including one mailing in April.

“Any volunteer fire department solicitation will have an arrowhead logo on the mailing request,” Nardine said.

Holovack also wrote a letter to residents outlining the telephone donations. That letter appeared on PTPFFA letterhead, which does not contain the arrowhead logo, but does list the fire station’s address and telephone number.

“We apologize for any confusion our event may have caused the residents and businesses in our township. We look forward to providing a fun community event this July,” Holovack said.

Nardine said there is no animosity between the two groups.

“This has nothing to do with us not getting along,” Nardine said.

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