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Firefighters’ union accuses city of “cheating”

CEDAR FALLS, Iowa (KWWL) – On Facebook, the Cedar Falls firefighters’ union accused the city of allowing “cheating” during a job interview.
Captain Bobby Wright was on the interview panel for fire captain while he was interviewing for a battalion chief position last spring.

“The fact that one individual had questions, had to know the answers to them, had the grading scale for it, and had heard answers to those very same questions just earlier in the day and knew how they were evaluated gave him a distinct advantage over others,” said union president, Scott Dix.

The union says some of these questions were the same. Questions included how one would deal with a difficult employee, suggestions for the department, and 2 others.

Dix also said he thinks the process isn’t thorough.

“Those questions would be appropriate if it was a small part of an entire testing process, where you had already been evaluated on your actual capability to go to an emergency scene and mitigate it,” said Dix.

The city gave a statement in which they say Dix’s claims are quote “completely and utterly without merit.” They go onto say this is a process they’ve used for years in different departments and that the whole thing was approved by the civil service commission. Their full statement is below.

Leaders in the department say that everyone who interviewed that day received a passing score, but that no one has been promoted.
We reported, a few months ago when 4 public safety officers were transferred to help lead the fire department full time.
It’s not an official position yet, but the city has said a public safety supervisor position is possible. Those PSOs that were moved could be potential candidates.
The union says they’ve not filed any legal action at this time, but it’s not off the table.

The Cedar Falls Civil Service Commission is comprised of three people appointed by the mayor.

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Taylor Vessel

Multimedia Reporter

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