Stevensville mayor resigns firefighter position

Stevensville Mayor Brandon Dewey and the town council have been at odds over the volunteer firefighting position he has held for 12 years. The city attorney said holding both the mayor and firefighting jobs at the same time is "incompatible." At Monday's council meeting Dewey said the controversy  has "crippled" government and said he will leave the fire department immediately.

Stevensville's newly elected mayor has resigned his position as a volunteer firefighter after the town council unanimously voted to ask for that resignation.

Mayor Brandon Dewey's two positions have been contentious among members of the council for some time.

The city attorney said in his opinion working both jobs at the same time is "incompatible."

Council president Bob Michalson said as mayor Dewey is the fire chief's supervisor and when the mayor is a firefighter the chief is his supervisor.

He said that could lead to problems.

At Monday evening's council meeting Dewey said the move felt like a "personal attack." He said it has "crippled" Stevensville government.

"Something must be done to move this all forward to lift the gridlock we find ourselves in," said Dewey. "For the sake of the community so that their government can continue to work for them I am resigning from the Stevensville fire department effective immediately."

But Michalson said "it is a law. It's a law that has ramifications," he said. "Basically it comes down to one master cannot wear two hats."

Several people at the meeting asked the council to find a way to let the mayor remain on the department, especially since volunteers are always needed to meet a growing call load.

The volunteer position is unpaid but the 27-year-old Dewey could be eligible for a pension when he is 55.

The issue is before the Attorney General's office.

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