|Welcome to the Official Website for the Wading River Fire District|
|By Wading River Fire District|
|March 13, 2023|
The Wading River Fire District, like all fire districts, is governed by a board of fire commissioners consisting of five commissioners, with the assistance of a secretary and treasurer. The fire district is a political subdivision within New York State and operates as a municipality, independent from the town(s) it resides in. Our fire commissioners are elected by the registered voters of the fire district for a five year term. In order to qualify for election as a fire commissioner, a candidate must reside within the fire district and be at least 18 years of age. One commissioner is elected each year on the second Tuesday in December, with the office starting in January immediately following the election. The term of office continues until December 31st of the fifth year. The secretary is appointed annually by the board. The treasurer is also an appointed position within the Wading River Fire District, but may be a publicly elected position (as dictated by New York Town Law). The secretary and treasurer are salaried positions. The fire commissioners do not receive compensation and may also be members of the fire department, but may not hold the current rank of chief or assistant chief of the fire department. The fire commissioners may also employ persons as may be necessary to effectuate the objects and purposes of the fire district.
All fire districts in New York State are governed by laws set forth by the state legislature. The New York State Town, General Municipal, Public Health and Public Officers are just a few of these laws. The board also must follow and remain compliant with Federal and State Rules and Regulations including those of the NFPA (National Fire Protection Association), OSHA (Occupational Safety & Health Administration, PESH (Public Employee Safety and Health, DEC (Department of Environmental Conservation), EEOC (Equal Employment Opportunity Commission). DOL/FLSA (Department of Labor/Wages and the Fair Standards Act), DOH (Department of Homeland Security). DOH (Department of Health Services), and Suffolk County Civil Service.
The board prepares and submits a budget to the town(s) it resides within on an annual basis. The annual budget hearing of the fire district takes place on the third Tuesday of October each year. The town collects the taxes for the fire district through a property tax levy. These funds are used to build and maintain fire stations, to purchase and maintain fire apparatus, and to establish a fire department. The money is also used for things such as fire hydrant rental, insurance, utilities, fuel, and a retirement program for the volunteers. These actions take place at meetings of the Board of Fire Commissioners, which are open to the public. . All work sessions and public hearings are also conducted in a public forum.
The most important responsibility the Board of Fire Commissioners have, is to provide for the fire and emergency protection within the fire district. This is accomplished by overseeing the Wading River Fire Department. Reporting from the fire departments chief officer on a regular basis, assists the board with evaluating the fire and emergency protection being performed. This also can be completed through occasional ISO (Insurance Service Office) evaluations.
The board has the final approval of new members wishing to join the fire department, as well as the annual approval of the fire department's chief officers. The board may also implement rules and regulations that govern the operations of the fire department, but may not interfere with the chief officers or the fire department when the fire department is on duty
The fire district is subject to an annual audit by an independent certified accountant. The New York State Comptroller may also audit the records of the fire district at any time and make suggestions for improved financial operations, if areas of concern are found.
The Wading River Fire District covers an area of 9.8 square miles, within the Towns of Riverhead and Brookhaven. The population as of the most recent census is 7,900. Four main roadways pass through within the district; State Route 25 (Middle Country Rd), SR 25A, Sound Ave and the northern section of the William Floyd Parkway. Also within the fire district are two (2) Shoreham-Wading River schools, the Little Flower Children Services Campus, AHRC Complex, Calverton National Cemetery, portions of Brookhaven State Park & Otis Pike Preserve, Lewin Farms, Wildwood State Park, Camp Wauwepex, Camp Dewolfe, a U.S. Army Reserve Center, Brookhaven Recreation Center (BMX track), The Inn at East Wind, several Shopping plaza's and the defunct Shoreham power plant. Large portions of land within the fire district are environmentally protected areas, including 209 acres of marsh land and 15 acres of beach barrier with the Long Island Sound in addition to a portion of the Pine Barrens. The fire district is mainly a residential community, with most of the commercial areas along the SR-25A corridor.
Surrounding fire districts are Rocky Point, Ridge, Manorville, and Riverhead. The Riverhead Volunteer Ambulance Company response district also surrounds the Wading River Fire District, operating in the Riverhead and Manorville Fire District portions within the Town of Riverhead.
The Wading River Fire District currently maintains two firehouses; the main Wading River Fire Department building at 1503 North Country Rd. and a satellite fire department station at 700 Hulse Landing Rd. (CR 54). The fire district offices are located within the main firehouse. The properties are maintained by one full time and one part-time custodian.