Wednesday, March 17, 2010

Aberdeen Township Fire Department

Note: The following is an article by an anonymous author. Given the circumstances, I have decided to wave the prohibition against anonymous articles.

Dear Mr. Warren,

Let me start by saying I enjoy reading your blog although I don’t always agree with your views or the views of your posters. Everyone has a right to their own opinion about all matters. As such I am going to ask you to post this email.

I am writing to you in reference to some of the fire (pardon the pun) the fire districts have been taking. I want to clear up some issues which people may not exactly understand.

Aberdeen Township consists of two fire districts. Fire District #1 is known as Aberdeen Hose and Chemical and Fire District #2 is known as Cliffwood. Each district is independent of each other and contains one fire company, however together these companies make up the Aberdeen Township Fire Department. Each district is run by a Board of Fire Commissioners which takes care of the daily operations of the fire district including the fire officials however the boards have very little control over how the actual company is run. That is left up to the executive board and line officers of each company. These boards of commissioners are elected by the public to run the fire districts. Each board holds one (1) meeting a month that is open to the public. I can tell you from experience that the public does not come out. All matters pertaining to the district are brought up at these meetings. All purchases and expenditures are discussed in detail before they are voted on by the respective boards. At the end of each meeting, the floor is turned over to any public present for questions or comments.

A person on your site raised the question as to why our budgets increase every year. I am going to attempt to explain that as well as I can. As with everything, firefighting equipment has a life span. That life span all depends on how much an item is used and the manner in which it is used. The nature of our work is dirty and rough. If any of our equipment is damaged in any way it must be taken out of service and either repaired or replaced. What many people don’t understand is that our equipment is very expensive. The average set of turnout gear which consists of just a jacket and pants costs between $3500 and $5000 depending on size and distributor. Add to that approximately $200 for boots, $75 for gloves, $50 for a nomex hood, and up to $500 for a helmet. Now if any of that equipment gets even a small tear it must be replaced because its ability to provide protection has been compromised. Next let us look at some of the tools we use. Take a chainsaw for example. Anyone can go to Home Depot or Lowes and purchase a decent chainsaw for anywhere from $200-$500. That same exact chainsaw will cost a fire company 2-3 times that amount because we have to buy the one that says its NFPA certified. A scba, the device we use to breathe in smoke filled or toxic environments, costs upwards of $3500 for a single unit. Now let’s look at the actual apparatus and building. Each piece of apparatus requires maintenance on a preventative and corrective basis. An engine or pumper requires the pump and hose to be tested annually. An aerial or ladder truck requires its main ladder to be tested annually as well as all ground ladders. The building also has to be maintained. Be it fixing a leaking roof or replacing a light bulb that has gone out. These services cost a lot of money and as with everything else I have mentioned the cost goes up every year.

What I have touched on here is merely the firefighting end of things. I haven’t discussed the administrative end of things because I will be honest and say I don’t know all the numbers. I know there are insurance premiums to be paid so that the firefighters are covered in the event of an injury or heaven forbid a death.

I just irks me to know these people who complain about the budget are the same people who won’t join our ranks. We are a volunteer organization. We put our lives on the line every time that call comes in. Granted it’s not a fire every time but the most dangerous time for us is actually responding to the call. If you have a problem with our budgets come to a meeting and see how the money is being spent. The fire districts are very transparent if you would just show up. I am going to end this by asking a favor. The next time you see a blue light coming up behind you PLEASE yield. If it was your house or your family in trouble you would want people to yield so that we can get there safely and quickly.

Thank you,

A Concerned Volunteer Fireman
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FD-Advocate said...

I enjoyed your comment, and I agree with you that the costs for fire equipment is high, and the cost of maintenance goes up every year. That being said, I think the main complaint is from those who are "in the know" about how a good protion is spent. First, the Fire Commissioners are elected, and they receive a stipend for their service. They are supposed to plan the budget, make the expenditures, keep the records, etc. for the District. However, in Fire District #1, the Board of Fire Commissioners many years ago put in place a District Chief who reports to the Board, and does all their work for them. He gets a District paid vehicle 24/7/365. Also they have a Fire Official, a Fire Inspector, and a District Secretary on their payroll. These last three positions can be found on the Civil Service list for the State because they are legal positions for the District to virtue of their receiving tax dollars, they are tasked with providng Fire Protection for the town, so a Volunteer Fire Company has a contract with the District to provide the men for this task, and the District provides the building, and equipment. The District Chief was given supervisory powers over the Fire Company, and it's Officers by the Board because they took good care of their friend, and allowed him to maintain his power and control over the Fire Company. This is the only district in the State with a District Chief, who is performing the duties the Board of Commissioners is elected and paid to do. They work once a month, since his retirement, the District Chief only now works two days a week. He keeps the vehicle though. Most of his work is done in a few hours on one of the days he works, once a month the rest of the time he can be observed playing solitaire on the office computer. Also, last year the long time secretary retired. In her place was put one of the sitting elected Fire Commissioners with a pay raise of 100% (that's double what the retired secretary made). I would alo like to point out that the Board of Fire Commissioners although elected to their posts is a closed club. No one can be elected a Fire Commissioner in District #1 without the District Chief's approval, and this has been demostrated many times when it has been tried. There is not one single successful instance of an election going against the wishes of the old man. Also recently, the District Chief had charges brought against him for harrassing Fire Company members, and Assaulting a Fire Company Officer. This Board has taken no action, and considers the action closed because the Fire Company was told that their Officers are subordinate to the District Chief at their meeting. So nothing was done to hold him accountable for his actions. There are some very shady goings on at the District, and they need to be brought into the light of day, and all involved should be held accountable to the taxpayers. But nothing will happen unless they come to the meetings and speak up. by the way, since the travesty that took place at the Fire Company meeting the Fire Company Chief, the Deputy Chief, and Captain have resigned their posts. Also two of their more experienced and active Firemen quit. This situation has to change or the Fire Company wont last long because there are not enough qualified men to hold officer positions, and their ranks are depleted of active firemen who can no longer tolerate the hypocarcy, and the behavior of the bully who holds the position of District Chief.

Anonymous said...

I don't think a lot of us residents are at issue with the actual equipment cost and although the budget does continue to rise every year just like anything else in these economic times we must now address what has come out in this blog regarding this so called "District Chief" and what some have called his puppets or cronies. If no other district has a District Chief, why does Aberdeen? If he only works two days, why does he get a brand new vehicle? How is it a District Commissioner steps into a secretary position and the salary gets doubled? I will admit I am ignorant as to even who these individuals are with the exception of Mr. Vinci because of him being an elected official in town. I also know and have heard of his reputation but apparently he has been staying out of length if any of the alleged statements are in fact true. I am quite skeptical about this whole district thing now that I have been reading this information and will now be making it a point to ask questions.

Anonymous said...

Being a volunteer fireman in an other town and hearing what happened with this alleged assault I decided to see if anything was written in the Aberdeener and low and behold not only has there been writing but trash talk too. I have to say Lou should have gone a long time ago and I hope this is the breaking point. Having past dealings with him I can tell you that it's either his way or the highway. In my years of the fire service, I have not seen anyone with a God complex like this indiviual's and if you cross him he will never let you out of the cross hairs.

I know the individuals that resigned from their officer positions and these gentlemen were the future of that company and now they are gone. What is left, a mediocare at best acting chief and a young kid as Luitenant. Surrounding fire companies used to look up to and respect Aberdeen-Oakshades and apparently that is all gone and it is no doubt that Lou can be considered to blame. It is no mistake who the Commissioners are because they were hand picked. Since a Commisioner has taken the secretary position I suspect he will have to step down. Just watch who he picks next. I have a strong feeling who it will be. Patiently waiting the outcome of this.

Ret NYFD Ladder 23 said...

If nothing else needs to be said these few points needs to be explained to the taxpayers who pay the bills and who are most liable.

An assault is said to have occured at a meeting of the fire volunteers. If true and even one fire commisioner knows it or witnessed it the police should have been called immediately no matter who was involved. If the police were not called their is legal consequences and possibly improper conduct in the supervisory office that needs to be looked into. If an assault occured on town property and the police were not called there may be legal liabilities. If the police know of an assault through this blog site or by word of mouth but took no action there is liability.

If the police were not contacted or did not take action because they are friendly with the people invoilved there is liability and possible official misconduct.

The police look at this site and more then likely know or have heard that an assault may have occured at the fire house and should investigate the situation if for no other reason then to assure an assault did not take place.

If commisioners that were not in the house the night of the supposed assault and may have heard of a possible assault taking place but took no action, there may be liability and official misconduct for not having an investigation undertaken having heard of or full knowledge of a possible assault.

All this liability for a man who supposedly retired already leaves many questions as to his true duties. The house needs to cut their losses and put the Chief out of the house once and for all. If not the questions will not go away and the liability and trust of the community is in jeopardy as well. More importantly the membership will know for certain that this man can do anything up to and including assaulting people and get away with it.

In the past some have spoken of deals suggested or otherwise spoke of this same man being involved this same man and more questionable conduct. Conduct which is said to have included demands for equipment in exchnage for developmental approvals out off of 516. Same questionable approvals may have been given involving the apartments by the parkway where equipment was to have been given and shared and no sharing occured. The same goes for this same mans possible arrogant and forceful conduct around the house with members and the daily operations in the house.

The writing is on the wall and so is the liability that this man exposes the house and possibly the taxpayers as well. The supposed card games, solotaire playing, questionable finances and more needs a complete explanation. The biggest explantion needs to come from all of the commisioners who it seems are too close to the situation and the individual involved.

I think an outside investigation needs to be conducted by the prosecutors office to give the main body of volunteers a true sense of accountability for ones actions. Other wise a house divided will fall. I have seen it in professional houses never mind a house manned by community volunteers who don't need to feel that even if assaulted by another would meet with indifference by the supposed leaders of the house.

Time to put the house in order and protect the honor of the volunteers who are not the central figures in this public problem. I say public problem as I heard two men talking about the whole thing while having lunch today with my son.

Anonymous said...

I am presently a member of Oakshades and the reason I will remain anonymous is for anticipated retalitory reasons.

I have chosen not to post in the previous thread because because of all trash talk that I expect to be coming from in house individuals and rightfully so, I don't blame them a bit.

I have seen the moral of this company decline over the years and am comfortable in saying that it all is because of Lou. He has made the fire company what it is today, however he will be the one to take it down also. Funny how things come full circle.

Lou is not the same man he used to be years back and he is starting to take it out on the members. All volunteer companies are struggling to get new members and the state guidelines take away any incentive but those that stick with it come onboard and are subject to his wrath. With the exception of the recent issue with four or more members leaving, in the past ten years you can ask any member that went exempt, quit or stopped just coming around at least one of the several reasons that comes up is Lou.

I will say that when it comes to equipment, Lou has the members best interest at hand and that is why the budget is what it is. Don't thank the Commissioners, they are just entities as it is Lou that rules the roost.

If Lou was smart, he should have gotten out while the getting was good. Nice pension, Florida or the Carolinas a couple times a year but look what happened.

At a company meeting on 3/9/10, Lou lied to every member present as well as all five commisioners about assaulting an officer in the firehouse and that evening nothing was done about it to the disgrace of everyone in that room and I regret not speaking up or raising my hand when the opportunity arose and for that I will never forgive myself. I still don't believe anything would have come of it if I spoke or seconded a motion to suspend him but now it is in the hands of the Commissioners, his employers. Unfortunately the strings in their backs are tight and Lou has a tight grip.

It is also my understading that Mr. Vinci wants to impeade on our first ammendment rights by not allowing people like myself to speak or write our feelings but being a politician I would not expect him to understand the constitution. You are a bigger jackass than I thought, see you on the steps of the Supreme Court if you think you can stifle us.

Hang in there guys and have hope that the Commissioners will look out for our interest instead of their own for once.

Anonymous said...

When are the meetings, It may be time for the public to show up.

I had to say it said...

Much like the town council the F D leadership is too connected and too controlled by money. We have an awful lot of money hidden in our F D accounts and the too connected commisioners know it. They don't want it to come out to the public how much we have and who actually controls it. It is almost a mafia family type control.

What has taken place with Lou over the years along with the recent assault and the coverup by our supposed leadership is criminal. I agree with the post above and can say categorically that our local law enforcement officers should have been called to the assault scene. Here too Lou rules the day since he is very close with the officers at the top of the police force. It too is a good old boy network and too connected and too controlled by money and more.

The F D is no different then the town council where the money is hidden and that is doled out with only one thing in mind. Never let the public know how much we take and to who we give it. Some of my brothers help with their elections so they can't be trusted to look at Lou and his actions because of the money.

I will leave the F D soon if Lou is not dealt with officially and the assault is not properly investigated. I will not be the next to give of my time to be berated or pushed around by Lou. If you do not take his command or do his almost absolute bidding you are on his list. Lou is not made of teflon but it seems nothing sticks to him. He slides away with little fear of reprocussion from his too connected and beholding commissioners and others.

There needs to be a honest, factual and responsible action by the commisioners in this case and especially in this most recent incident where Lou put his hands on another member. It should not be swept under the rug no matter what some commisioners beholding to Lou may want to do.

The commisioners also fear Lou and for that reason and some others some will soon take leave of an organization we love and have dedicated ourselves to. If the next meeting is not handled properly and in a manner that benefits all of us, I will more then likely make the decision to leave. It is like a incestuous family at the top and unless you are ordained and approved by the commisioners like La Cosa Nostra, you don't get made. That is not what I signed up for and Lou and his blessing mean little to most of us.

I thank Don for stepping up but all that does is allow Lou to continue his arrogant and often abusive control. That arrogant and abusive control has cost members we and the residents need and depend on. It is time that F D leadership acts in an official capacity and cuts its losses.

As for Commisioner Vinci he too needs to go. Leadership that allows its membership to be abused continually and allows Lou to be the final word is soon to hear my final word and maybe others in our ranks say who will say goodbye.

Anonymous said...

I wrote this letter. I agree 100% about all that is being said about this "district Chief". It is a joke position and never should have been put into place. No matter what the commissioners say he has no authority over fire scenes in the states eyes. If something goes wrong it will be the officers butts on the line not his.

Anonymous said...

There is something to be said for experience, dedication and time in grade. Tthat being said possibly assaulting a fellow member or underling or conduct where members are belittled or worse needs to be dealt with prudently by leadership in order for leadership to mantain respect, control and proper discipline. Not dealing with a favored son will have terrible effects for a long time to come. Discipline goes both ways in this instance or anarchy will rule the day. From what I have read the commisioners better act and act soon. Brooming this under the rug will not be enough.

Anonymous said...

An apology to the mebership has been talked about. It will not be enough. Send him packing with his tail between his legs. It is time for the T Rex to be sent to the tar pits like all old dinasours.

Time for change period said...

The absolute rule of Lou needs to be over. The fire commisioners better do the right thing this time. It is not a ship but it will be a mutiny. What will happen when a fire happens and no one is there to show up. Will Lou fight the fire by himself? In his mind he always does. What he has done and the disrespectful manner that he talks to people has gone on too long. Time for change I say.

Thanks Ladder 23 said...

I agree. I also that Ret FDNY for his insight and opinions. I am sure a paid house is no different when a person in a leadership role is allowed to bully and abuse others. Thanks again Ladder 23. Stay safe.

Anonymous said...

Lets clarify that this drama is taking place in District #1 and NOT District #2. They are two separate entities and I don't want to see them lumped together in this mess.

Anonymous said...

Get real people nothing is going to happen to him. He controls the house and has stacked or been a
coconspirator with all of the other commisioners for too long. It would be like my favorite game Jenga. All it takes is for the right one to fall and they all go. Nobody is going anywhere in that house. They like their little kingdom and that is it. No changes and not even a slap on the wrist for the abuser and assaulter King Lou.

Todd Arthur Bellone said...

This is for QT Pie,

This is Todd and what makes you think I have been writing any of these post when my contribution was one in total and I will be happy to let you know to which one it was. Early on, someone inquired what a District Chief was and it was I that stated "A District Chief is a glorified Fire Official that sits on his fat ass two days a week and plays solitare at the tax payers expense". That was it and I informed two Commissioners that I posted that comment and they were free to inform whomever they wanted.

Since I was the individual that made the motion the evening of 3/9 to suspend Lou for assault you seem to think I am retaliating in words because no one had the balls to second my motion that evening. I am sure Lou was suprised no one at least seconded the motion and I was fully aware that if it came to a vote it would not pass because Lou has numbers and everyone intimidated that there will be repercussions if they go against him.

I removed my keys to the firehouse before I even walked in the door that night knowing what the outcome would be and I was there the night the assault took place not five feet from where I was standing.

I witnessed Lou emfactically lie in front of the entire company and his bosses that evening with no outcome but agian it was anticipated what the outcome would be.

If you want to accuse me that is fine by be sure you comfortable in doing so. I am not the only person in this fire department that knows Lou's ailments and start looking at some of your own. Some of you may think ill of me but some of you know that my morals would not bring me to make light of someone's ailments and I sleep good at night knowing that myself.

I have been sitting back idlely watching from a far laughing at all these postings. For those of you not associated with the fire company, the postings are at least 95% accurate.

I have nothing to hide as you indicate, I will be the first to admit any of my indiscretions such as several teenage arrest for fireworks and stealing keg taps from parties as well as a DUI some twenty years ago.

I have information that if it came out could hurt certain people close to Lou that I care about very much with this information going back to when my father was a Commissioner so don't be so quick to accuse me of posting on this site when you don't have a clue.

I have seen better times with this company and I see this being the end of what once was and that is unfortunate but we reep what we sew and if no one other than I wanted to do anything about it the night of the meeting than it is you that has to deal with the out come, I have the luxury of being a Life Member. I have posted my middle name if anyone thinks it is not me.

Todd Bellone

Anonymous said...

Thank you for your service! I am sorry to see you go. There is animosity between the two companies in town and you were one of the people working to end it. For that I thank you. I feel these recent developments may in a strange way bring the department together.
For any member who has walked out on District #1 remember you have a sister company and I do believe the majority of us support you.

Anonymous said...

I dont know much about firefighting so my question maybe a little stupid. I recently saw a fire on Atlantic Ave. Why did the the white truck with the ladder on it take a different hose hose off the truck then the red trucks did? I didnt realize there weree different hoses. I thought a fire hose was a fire hose. Like i said, probably a stupid question.

FD-Advocate said...

It's not a stupid question. Different hose types, and widths have characteristics that make some more suitable in different situations. Some provide more water volume, and others provide the capability of more pressure using less water. It depends on the extent of the fire, where it is, and what is burning for the Officer at the scene to make that determination. His decision is based on the tactical choices he makes in fighting that particular fire.

Anonymous said...

I know that young kid that you are talking about.if you knew what you were talking about you would know that he is married and owns a house has has a good Carrier so before you make assumptions get your facts straight. He also has been a fire fighter for ten years.

Anonymous said...

Well it definitely appears members from both districts read this blog site.

Anonymous said...

I have a two part question for the Aberdeener. What is your take on the original post about the budget expenditures and what is your take on the whole district chief mess?

Aberdeener said...

ATFD budget expenditures - The fire department has budget inefficiencies, too much being spent in one place and too little being spent in another place. Until we have a changing of the guard, we'll never know how inefficient.

District Chief - He's got a long history of exemplary service to this community but it's time for new leadership.

Anonymous said...

A complete and total review is warranted of the Lou fire department. Both fire departments as a matter of fact should be checked. There is an awful lot of money involved and just the few mentions of incidents or strongly possible improprieties posted here need to be checked out. The insider deals and possible illegal acts of Lou and others by selling off developmental approvals involving the recently convicted pedophile Mark Corren, the throughly corrupt Norman Kauff and our liar Chief Lou is also proof enough for an investigation being needed.

The meeting with the truck as a bargaining tool happened exactly as stated. The truck deal over the approvals sought for the Frenuea land deal were on the table and Lou and another new fire official was there. While the deal eventually fell through, as normally happens with Norman Kauff being involved, it was the actual selling of a questionable approval for a fire truck that was to be paid for in full by a man now in jail named for bribing public offiials for land deals and approvals. That the above men would get into bed with such a man, much less sell an approval for a fire truck is highly possible. This among other things all come back to involving Chief Lou makes him the center of most problems.

Let Lou deny the truth as to what occured at the developmental meeting. Another member now a junior to Lou was there as well, if Lou denies it happened. Wait a minute Lou has already denied the assault so his word is crap anyway as we watched him stand there that night. Although I would have loved to have been there when Spaliero asked Lou how much a fire truck cost. After Lou responded with the number for such a purchase Spaliero agreed to buy Lou his truck and then told Lou to get out of the meeting like Lou was no longer needed or integral to his needs. Lou was dismissed like he dismisses many of us. It must have been priceless to have seen Lou be told to leave like he no longer mattered. Lou no longer matters is the absolute truth in this and many more situations. Spaliero was right.

Lois M Nicora said...

FED UP!!!!!!!

I have been following this fiasco with great personal interest. There are one or two things that are true. Yes, Lou can be a grumpy old man, but I think all of us can be. True, in most cases it is Lou's way or the highway, but Lou's way usually turns out to be the right way. Over the years under Lou's guidance how many injuries can you remember? Because Lou's way is the safest and surest way. On a personal level, sometimes I wish he would be wrong, but he is right!

A question? Are or have any of you been volunteers (besides the persons who are firemen)? I have been a volunteer for several organizations for a long while and it can sometimes be a thankless job. I can't imagine how hurt Lou must be by the comments against him. Some thanks for over 60 years of dedication to ATFD and the community. I know for a fact that he has helped quite a few company members when they've been in need (taken to the hospital late at night and such).

Another question:
Have any of you ever been awarded a plaque for saving a child's life? Lou has.

As for his returning to the job after retiring, he did not volunteer for the job, he was requested to come back to assist. The ranting over the vehicle: is anyone aware of the fire detecting equipment in said vehicle that must be at every fire. This means Lou must be at every fire, also imagine the tremendous responsibility of safe guarding that equipment!!!

About the corruption is there proof of these accusations? You realize that even writing anonamously your postings can be traced and liability suits can be awfully expensive.

Regarding the assault is there a possiblity that Lou was provoked? Did he not ask the "victim" to back of as he was yelling into Lou's face and poking him in the chest?

You may not care if all of this fuss ruins the fire company or not, but I'm sure the community will when they need to shell out millions of dollars for paid firemen!!!!!

Thank you brother for you have done and probably continue to do even as these cowards are stabbing you in the back!!!!!

Anonymous said...

Lois, I understand that this must be difficult for you to swollow and you make some valid points, however pertianing to the assault which started this whole mess, you have already expressed Lou's story so trying to convince you otherwise would be futile nor would I expect you to believe anyone other than your brother-in-law out of respect for family.

As to any liable aspects of what is being written, I would be hard pressed to see if any of these statements would warrant a liable suit under the 1st ammendment specifically knowing what a large percentage of people know.

I am sorry that you are being exposed to this and in my opinion Lou brought it on himself and it was only a matter of time before something gave way and that was the evening he assaulted an officer and did not accept responsibility for that. Its one thing to deny something but when you lie about it and ask others to lie for you there is no turning back. I have told my sons and daughters over the years that if you tell one lie it only leads to another and it is not followed enough but "the truth will set you free", however it is too far gone for any recanting.

I hope no one gets hurt in all this but I think its to late for that and I'm not sure it can be stopped.

Anonymous said...

Lou caused this to occur no one else. The leadership will unfortunatly allow it to fester. And finally Lou should see the writing on the wall. It reads "time to go" and "thank you for your years of dedicated service".

Too bad Lou could not seperate himself from his self installed desperate and arrogant control factor. The same could be said for the department leadership to act properly and in the best of interests of all the members who are not so closely tied to Lou and his questionable activities. Activities which seem very questionable involving Fat Tony S. since he is a man that Norman Kauff and his type get in bed with at a significant cost to the taxpayers because of their greed.

Corruption in the town council and our new town leadership is without question going on. The Fire Department membership deserves more then some shadow move to hide the problem. If Vinnie and the other commisioners want the membership to survive they better step up and take decisive action now and have Lou finally retire.

This time it is less then ten men who have left the house because of Lou. What will be the next excuse that the comissioners will use when Lou strikes again. He will go off again and the commisioners know it. It is time the comissioners step up and tell Lou to retire for good.

This has gone all too long already. It was not handled properly from the start. Their should have been charges filed and as was stated if someone poked Lou in the chest or instigated the assault, then that would come out with a complete and thorough investigative process. I agree with a prior post that it should not be our local officers. I think it should be the prosecutors office out of Freehold to do it.

If the comissioners don't do the right thing for all of us they too should go.

Anonymous said...

.lois to add to the above their is no taking away of the great things that lou has done in his career.i for one can say that i would not be the fireman i am today with out his guidance.but their is a rule in the fire service never leave your partner and by him wondering away from the truth he broke that vow.i am a district one firemen. to the people that read and add THEIR TO CENTS to this attack district two or cliffwood volenteer has nothing to do with this whole thing so please refrain from writing about them they are not involved in this mess it is a in house problem that needs to be delt with in is a real shame that the only people hurt in this is the people that look to us as firemen to come and help them in their time of is a shame to say that i to will have no choice but to hang up my helmet. their is no telling what is comming next.i will not be part of the headache that this has turned into.i have never in my life have remained anonymous but i have no choice and if that makes me a coward so be it.i still take pride in saying that while everyone else was , running out.the few proud men that i served with ran in. thank you for posting this

TYPICAL said...





FD-Advocate said...

This is for Lois. I understand you've only heard one side of the story, but the then Fire Chief did his own in house investigation. He spoke and took statements from everyone who was at the firehouse at the time of the assault. His findings are as follows there are no less than 5 witnesses that uphold the story that Lou assault the Deputy Chief. Additionally, the Deputy Chief at no time poked, pushed or raised his hands to Lou. So even though youare inclined to believe, and probably forgive him, but He lied to you to. I was there I saw the whole thing happen up close, and Lou is lying about the whole mess. Also Lou was brought up on formal charges by the Deputy Chief, and Lou stood in front of the assembled members, and "LIED TO THEIR FACES", he doesn't deserve any praise because if a hero goes over to the dark side we don't applaud him as he is taken down. We applaud BECAUSE he is taken down. Lou however is not a hero. He's a BULLY, and he arranged for this position for himself because he didn't want to give up his power. He engineered the whole thing, and since then has been hand picking Commissioners. Truthfully, I would be embarrassed to be related to him in any way. So it is up to you to forgive him or not for lying to you to cover his ass.

Anonymous said...

you my friend and brother fireman have lost the rationality of the oath we took to serve thew people of this town. YOU have become so involved with this that you are now biting the heads off the people that were sucked into this with you.get a grip or you will be no better than him

Anonymous said...

For FD-Advocate,

It is of my opinion that unfortunatly, although expected, this forum has reached family of Lou and they are certainly entitled to their opinion like anyone else on this matter,however taking pot shots to those trying to defend Lou is uncalled for and please think twice before crossing that line when it comes to family.

Although Lou put himself in this position does not mean posters need to address certain people in such a manner.

Anonymous said...


Anonymous said...

To the anonymous person commenting on the young boy as a lieutenant, for your information being a good friend of this lieutenant I want to set a few things straight, he is a man not a kid, he works hard at his job, has a good career for which he received his state license for, it was NOT handed to him. So before you make such stupid comments make sure you know the facts! It's people like you that make such drama like what is going on in the fire department. This fire department used to be so good, the morale is down, thanks to people like you that really don't know what is going on, keep your comments to yourself!

Anonymous said...

To "the moral is down because of people like you"

Are you kidding me, no one is trying to take anything away from the individual some have called a kid, I realize he is a man, married and pays a mortgage. If you think that the moral is down for a silly comment like that you need to wake up and smell the coffee. Remember why we are here making all this stupid postings.

It is Lou that has affected the moral of the company, not some stupid poster making a comment about "the kid" and if you think otherwise you are an idiot.

My take on that original post in the other blog when the poster stated that the company is left with a mediocre at best acting chief and a kid lieutenant meant that "the kid" was a young first time officer. It had nothing to do with a personal jab at him and he has nothing to with this entire situation started by you know who.

If you want to write something, stick to the topic at hand instead of picking out a non-issue.

Anonymous said...

To the 7:31 posting about calling the individual a youg boy.

First of all, the reference "kid" was to the fact that he is a young lieutenant you idiot and to think that it is comments like that bringing down the moral of the company your even a bigger idiot. I know this individual is a grown man with a wife and house as well as being an outstanding member for at least 10yrs.

The moral is what it is because of Lou and nothing else so don't try to deflect from that. If you want to take sides that is fine but you know damn well what is bringing this company down.

FD-Advocate said...

Just for the record, I didn't attack anyone in Lou's family. I just pointed out that he is lying, and it doesn't appear that his family is deserving of the truth from him either. Everyone should hear all sides before making a decision. I also pointed out that it would be embarrassing to have taken up for him in the face of his blatant lying. If I offended anyone I apologize. Still the truth cannot change just because one wishes it, or hides from it. Also, I am not pleased to see this incident become what it has morphed into. This is not about the Fire Company. It's all about the corruption at the top, the Commissioners, and their District Chief. Over the course of history all dynasties have fallen when they have become to corrupt to survive. This ones time has come.

FD-Advocate said...

Please don't make an unwarranted accusation. I in no way took a pot shot at anyone. I just pointed out that Lois had been lied to by Lou. I also stated another fact, I would be embarrassing to take up for someone who had lied to me. Just ask any of Bill Clinton supporters after he came clean that he lied. So please lets not make this about the people posting. If I offended anyone I apologize. The truth always wins. Even when you hide from it.

FD-Advocate said...

Please don't make an unwarranted accusation. I in no way took a pot shot at anyone. I just pointed out that Lois had been lied to by Lou. I also stated another fact, I would be embarrassing to take up for someone who had lied to me. Just ask any of Bill Clinton supporters after he came clean that he lied. So please lets not make this about the people posting. If I offended anyone I apologize. The truth always wins. Even when you hide from it.

FD-Advocate said...

I apologize to everyone for multiple posts, but I was having trouble with my system, and thought the posts didn't go through. Sorry.

Apology will be bullshit said...

Lou may do a fake apology in front of the next meeting and then will go right back to being the old super controlling pain in the ass he has always been.

Dont forget he assaulted someone and routinely berates people. He cannot help it though since he is right even when he is very wrong. Time for the commissioners to step up and do the right thing for all. Not just protect their poker buddy.

Todd Arthur Bellone (#16) said...

Up earlier than usual this morning but a good thing as I feel like clearing my head before what is supposed to be a beautiful weekend.

Word keeps getting back to me that Mr. Vinci thinks I am the one making post on this site so I have decided to make my third and hopefully last. He also mentioned that my brother is also posting which I can conflict but he can comment himself if he so chooses to waste key strokes on Vinny.

Vinny, if you to believe me or not, I have made two previous post on this matter making this my third. If you choose to believe that is up to you but I know you are putting my name out there.

My response, I could care less and feel free to implicate me all you want. As long as I know I am responsible for only two of these writings I continue to monitor what you and Lou have turned this into.

Personally I don't know you and only know of you. Was it happenstance that you decided to participate again with the fire department the same year you decided to run for Town Council? Afterall, it does look good on a curriculum vitae and am suprised you stuck with it thus far but who would want to keep showing face every election year when you can just show up on Tuesday nights and Commissioner meetings.

You seem to think that "you won" as a result or non-result of the meeting night, however no one won that night and you show your ignorance in thinking so. If the Commissioners dealt with this from the start like any employer would have the truth never would have come out, you could have continued your social club but now it is beyond anyone's control to stop it.

You all shot yourself in the foot and no one else is to blame but Lou and the Commissioners. What happens if there is a formal investigation? The answer is, you guys deserve what you get but the members get the raw end of the deal.

The only thing I can say is shame on you and anyone else on the board trying to cover this up or hope it goes away. You have to agree that it is beyond that right?

Have the Commissioners even addressed the membership about this or does the moral continue to decline as you guys sit behind closed doors with Alan trying to figure a way out of this? Every day that goes by and the bosses don't address their employees the farther they seperate. Maybe a pep talk would have been at least a step in the right direction but since any of you can't make a move without Lou's permission the right thing will never be done.

Vinny, thanks for thinking of me and good luck.

Guys, try and hang in there and see what happens at the Commissioners meeting next month which will determine how your remaining time with the department will be onced the gavel hits the table at the end of the meeting. I am discouraged as what the outcome will be but I hold out hope also.

Note that I have put my gear number in my ID should anyone think it is not me.


Maybe time for Todd and gary to go public if said...

AS if anyone is shocked that Vin would choose to completely hide and keep secret all the little illegal, immoral and circumspect backroom deals he is apart of as a town councilman and fire commissioner. No one is surpised at any of it either. Vin you and the commissioners have screwed up and only Lou and his once and for all retirement will be the thing to settle this.

I disappointingly find it all to showing that Alan has chosen to involve himself and knows that he should immediately call for an investigation as to the assault and Lou's questionable conduct both recently and in the past. I for one don't know about the Spalleiro thing but it sounds like something Lou would do. This is especially true citing Norman Kauff and Mark Coren being involved since everyone knows they are as corrupt as corrupt can be.

If you need more proof just look at the apartments on Lower Main Street. Our fire response is hindered considerably by the building layout and maximum property overall are construction. The building height alone that was increased with Lou being involved leaves many questions. Don't even get me started on the vehicle bribe in exchange for his approvals either. That caused and continues to cause problems and distrust between the two houses in town. All this is centering on Lou. There is a central figure in all of this and it is not Gary, Todd or Mike or the rest of us. It is Lou and Lou alone.

So many questions involving Lou and his approvals over the years also of which should be looked into and probably will if the Commissioners don't do the right thing. Of all people Alan should know what the right thing to do is. We all respect you Alan and hope you make the right decision and guide these men to make the right move to restore morale and bring the house back to responsible and fair leadership alkong with vitality and membership.

If Lou leaves we may stand a chance at getting Todd, Gary and Mike among others back. Their dedication and length of service without all of the Lou baggage is unquesioned. We know we cannot say that of Lou and his Commissioners. Can we Alan?

Finally Lou has been an integral and leading person in the house. His knowledge and building of the house is obvious. His conduct that is routinely abusive, coinfrontational and where he is never wrong has brought this about. He will not change and it is time for Lou to go once and for all.

Anonymous said...

Vin is also involved with keeping Kauff and his corruption all of these years. You really expected him to take any action against his good buddie Lou. Get real.

Matawan F.D. said...

Just so you guys know some of us in the Matawan F.D. are behind you. We know all too well the problems you have faced with your historically questionable management that allows Lou to be the ringmaster. If it does not work out to benefit the membership after all is said and done just go public.

Anonymous said...

If Alan is willing to put his reputation on the line potitionally knowing what he knows than so be it. Alan has a lot on the line also and is a highly repected attorney in the county.

Vinny on the other hand, his reputation speaks for itself, how he has remained in office for so long is beyond me as he never gets my vote.

I am concerned with some of the other Commissioners in this that have families and good reputations that may end up getting trashed because of this potential cover up but in the same sense they are grown men and have every opportunity to step aside and I can only encourage them to do so.

How is it the district secretary makes more than one of the full time fire officials? I will tell you how, he used to be a commissioner. Can you imagine your subordinate making more money than you? What a joke and it only goes to show you, if all those commissioners agreed to his, the secretary's, compensation package to exceed that of a liscened fire official is an insult to say the least to the fire official.

Shame on you guys

The old geezer goes or else said...

The post above mine it spells out just some of the problems and secrets that Jimmy, Vin and the others don't want made public. They for sure absolutely hate this whole thing being made so public on this site as well. It is time for a change officers at the top. Everyone but the officers at the top know it. Hey officers on high can you hear your members screaming yet. Probably not since you keep yourselves locked away playing cards and solotaire. When the kid goes will Lou hire another former officer to do the job. Time for the old geezer to go.


Look what is happening to this once outstanding fire company.I can not believe what i am reading on this RAG.People this has blown way out of control ,yeah u can push the blame where ever u want.The fact still remains the same. This fire company is falling apart.I have worked many jobs in my life and I was once proud to say that being part of the ATHC has been the longest job that I ever held.The truth is what it is,now we have people CALLING EACH OTHER IDIOTS.I was one of the two officers who was involved with the investigation.19-1 Is my gear # .This should have never made it this far,but it has.People, on both sides of this bullshit need to get it together.the most insulting part of this whole thing is that no one took it into consideration the time that myself and gary took away from our familys to do the investigation.It is what it is and I guess now that everyone and their brother was brought into this their is no telling where this is going.I am very disturbed at some of the things that are being typed on this what ever this is.The typest that added the comment about the 80year old against the 50 yaer old and why it shouldnt have been reported.Who ever you are you need HELP.Todd their should be no reason to defend your self on this,you tried to do what you thought was right,good for you.Those of you who know me will no my gear # and those who dont my name is Michael D Romano.this needs to end . the only thing that im asking is to stop the shit flinging and resolve this.this blog is not the place to do it.I saw the whole mess like i said in the meeting it made me sick to my stomach..on that note im finished .1hour and twenty minutes to type

QT Pie said...

This will be the last time you hear from me because I don't have the time or patience to be involved in this nonsense.

I did not say you wrote ALL of the messages. I said I was going to attribute ALL of them to you. Hang with drunks--become one. Louis Auriemma has more FRIENDS than you think he has. If it makes you feel better to think no one seconded your motion because they were SCARED--THINK AGAIN!!!! Be careful about who you think YOUR FRIENDS are.

Don't you wonder how I knew you were one of the anonymous? I also know you are more involved with THE INSTIGATOR than you admit!!

Keep sleeping well, people with no conscience or scruples usually do.

Try to remember that Louis Auriemma helped to make ATH&C Co. an organization to be proud of.

Todd Arthur Bellone (Jersey Shore Sheathing) said...

You crack me up Wally, you are the best pal and I wish I was looking over your shoulder while you were typing it. Myself, I am about 85 words a minute but I don't like to brag.

I agree with some of your points to which is why I have only posted three times, this being my forth. I must admit it is quite addictive and difficult to hold back when reading some of the comments.

There is more than enough trash talk I will admit but it is the only way these people remaining anonymous can get it off their chest and if they do put their name to something there will certainly be repercussions by the district.

Myself, again I have the luxary of being a life member and can come and go as I please. I am not getting much out of posting because I don't have to deal with being there and when and if things change, meaning Lou gets the boot, then I will return.

I don't have an issue speaking my mind and most of you out there know that and thought I have in my previous postings.

Anyway enough said, your a good friend and I hope this all turns out for the best.

Anonymous said...

This Is Bullshit. At one point we were all brothers going into fires risking our lives to save others. This stupid bullshit blog system is not the place to add shit come back to the meeting and talk, leave it in house don't be little girls and go and cry on this web page. BE A MAN

Todd Arthur Bellone (501) said...

Well QT Pie, it seems you gave yourself up in your posting and not that I'm suprised but could you not pick a better alias than QT Pie? You can post what THINK allegedly gave me away in an anonymous posting and wether you believe I did not post it or not I could care less. I've done my time in that jail and its the other members that are subject to the warden's wrath now not me.

Although I know who you are now, you are the coward hiding behind an alias not me asshole so say what you will and stick up for Lou all you want as eventually the truth will come out and no one but Lou will have egg on his face.

I would never take anything away from what Lou did to make this company what it is today and was proud to be a part of it, however look at what he has made it into today. He did this not the members, not the officers, I would not expect someone as ignorant as you to understand that. I'm an open book, if you want to convince me otherwise, I would be happy to sit down with you at a place of your choosing and try and convince me otherwise. You know how to get in touch with me. Invite the rest of the Commissioners also as well as Lou. I will be happy to listen as long as I have my say. You might be suprised what you hear.

Keep sticking up for him as friends are supposed to do that and don't think I don't know how many friends he has but he has just as many enemies too.

As for the drunk part, not sure where that comes from but if you think I am associated with the victim in this, keep thinking that.

If you were any kind of a friend to Lou, you would advise him the proper thing to do would resign so at least his pension will remain intact but then advice coming from you would be like asking a shoe maker to repair the space shuttle.

Sorry folks, as minmal as it has been, I have already wasted enough time with this and I have no need to respond to assholes like QT Pie who have nothing better to do with their time.

Lou assaulted someone said...

What is posted on here is not merely infighting. It is the exposure of leadership and its complete and utter failings. Do not get mad and divisive at each other over parliamentary procedures. Lou has abused his fellow members for a long time now. His hard work over the years is now second to the conduct that has been disruptive and allowed for years. Many years while the connected leadership looked the other way. This was bound to happen and they knew it. So rather then deal with it properly leadership wants it swept away and hidden from public view. That is typical of the major problem with most leadership. Attorney Alan Falk also needs to tread lightly as if he is aware of an assault having taken plce he may be sworn to report it. Lou and his hard work was to be respected it has long past that his service has been a plus to the town and the company on the whole. Time to retire him again and for good. I also have a problem that the authorities in town are absent from their responsibilities in this. Someone was assaulted in a municipal building and they batter do what they are supposed to do. Or are they also in fear of Lou. He is just a man after all.

Anonymous said...

QT Pie is attributing all the comments to one person? I don't get it, but I am interested in who Vin_uh_um_oh QT Pie is referring to as the Instigator. If you read this QT Pie please respond.

Anonymous said...

Who are the drunks???

Anonymous said...

Hello-I am an Aberdeen resident who is unaffiliated with the fire department and wandered onto this blog out of curiosity. I don't know anything about the parties involved, but it appears to me that the concerned parties appear to be posting back and forth. First and foremost, I would like to thank all of you firemen for everything that you do to keep our town and its residents safe. I am very sorry that there appears to be so much turmoil, but I ask you to remember what is important--the town that you are protecting and the residents that you serve on a daily basis. I imagine that you put in countless hours of training, meetings, and calls to unselfishly help others. I truly hope that you resolve the issues so that you can band together and put your focus back on Aberdeen. Once that occurs, then perhaps you will be able to band together in order to fix the corruption and unethical procedures that appear to be going on. I'm not sure how one person can control so much of a fire company, or that violence is accepted in a municipal building, how a secretary can make more than a state official, or how political leaders can abuse their power. As an individual of the population that you serve and protect, I thank you and wish you well.

Todd A. Bellone (1st fire Malden Dr) said...

I see my brother Gary responded to the Bellone Boys comment. Where is that shit coming from? I know my name has been discussed multiple times by the Commissioners as being the author to the percentage of these postings in all three threads and believe me or not, with the exception of one, the remainder bear my name as does this one. it is easy enough for them to blame the parties that walk out of the meeting that night than to look at the person or persons that are still showing up on tuesday nights and to fire calls.

This is not a Bellone thing, our name reaches far back with this company with myself, Gary, Scott and my father who also was a Commissioner for 9-1/2 years.

This fire company has taken from the Bellone's and given us beyond measure and Lou has been in intricate part of both facets.

I made it perfectly clear the evening of the meeting that I had NO vendetta against Lou and most of you know we have clashed in the past. I also made it clear that evening that if it were two seperate individuals involved in this incident I would have made the same motion against the individual I witnessed as being that who assaulted or battered the victim.

I can't imagine my life without the fire company being part of it and I hope to return to it one day as although I only have 26+yrs on the books I have invested over 44yrs (my age) by virtue of my father being a memeber when I was born. Lou and his lovely wife Carol have been in my life since I was a baby and I remember as a young child visiting their first house in Keyport and Carol would take me swimming in the pool and swing me around in the water. It pains me to know that Carol will never see that young child in me ever again because of miss informative individuals putting my name on all these anonymous post. I am not disputing Lou lied that evening nor would I, He knows the truth and if he chooses to never utter it is his choice as he is the one that has to live with it.

I am saddened by what it has become and I suspect others feel this same way but will not speak for them. No one will come out of this unscathed and the outcome of that meeting night has set a precedence never to be duplicated.

Speaking for myself, I do not want to see Lou go down in flames but I feel the right thing has to be done here. If I were the one providing the advice, he should step down, retire and be the life member that he deserves to be. If the Commissioners need assistance with specing out a new truck, there is no one better to call on than Lou, help with the budget, call Lou, etc, etc.

My point in all of this is that the power needs to change hands and I can only hope that no one gets hurt anymore emotionally than all ready has happened no matter what the outcome.

And as for the police getting involved, its a non-issue and without warrant. Battery or not, it was one individual shoving another without recipercation. I do not condone anyone laying their hands on an other individual and if you choose to do that than be prepared to pay the concequences.