Today: Nov 15 , 2018

Alert: 'Yavapai Fire Protection' Has No Authority
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09 November 2018   Chief Scott Freitag

There is a group offering to start alternative fire services. It appears it is ssomething to stay away from.

This notice is related to a group established under the name Yavapai Co. Yavapai Fire Protection, otherwise known as Mr. Raymond Bagger and Mr. Joe Stanton. One of their Facebook pages is Yavapaiaz, they have multiple other pages as well.  

  • This group is in no way related to Central Yavapai Fire District (CYFD), Central Arizona Fire and Medical Authority (CAFMA), or any other Yavapai County emergency services agency. They are currently based in Tucson.
  • The individuals involved do not have firefighter qualifications, do not have any wildland qualifications, and do not have any EMS qualifications. This means they cannot provide the services for which they are seeking donations. 
  • They have stated that we (CAFMA) do not provide wildland protection out of our Chino stations or in Prescott Valley. This is a material misstatement of fact. CAFMA provides fire protection services both structural and wildland throughout our 254 square mile coverage area. 
  • While they are currently approved as a non-profit through the Corporation Commission, and have a 501c3, they do not have authority to operate a fire protection agency within the jurisdictional boundaries of an existing agency. This means they have no authority to solicit for fire protection contracts, or place “fire stations” within CAFMA’s jurisdictional boundaries. We are in contact with the Corporation Commission as well as the IRS seeking to file complaints.
  • They are listed as a non-profit and have been seeking as well as accepting donations. However, they state that their business model is to provide protection to homes at a contracted price. Being a non-profit and selling contracts to individual home or property owners for protection of their properties seems in direct contradiction to one another. 
  • They claim that they have talked with the Department of Forestry and Fire Management (DFFM) about a partnership and that the department may donate equipment to them in the future. The Director of DFFM, Jeff Whitney, categorically denies having any contact with these individuals. As they have no qualifications, they cannot contract or partner with DFFM or anyone else to provide any type of wildfire protection services volunteer or otherwise.  Even if they obtain their basic wildland red card, they are not qualified to provide the services they claim. 
  • They have made numerous claims to have talked with Fire Chiefs in Arizona that directed them to Yavapai County, and who have offered support to get them up and running. All fire officials they claim to have talked with deny ever having interaction with Mr. Raymond Bagger, Mr. Joe Stanton or any other person claiming to be with Yavapai Co. Yavapai Fire Protection. 
  • We are not saying that you should not donate to them as that is an individual choice. However, we do recommend you carefully consider your options. 
  • We do ask that if they offer to sell you a fire protection contract within the CAFMA’s jurisdictional boundaries, or any other established fire service boundaries, that you notify your local law enforcement agency immediately. Yavapai County Sheriff’s Department, Prescott Valley Police Department, and Chino Valley Police Department are aware of their activities. They are monitoring the situation. 
  • Below are links to three articles out of Pima County that were written about Mr. Bagger when he attempted these same activities within the jurisdictional boundaries of other fire service agencies. 
Efforts to Start Volunteer Fire Department Raise Questions

Questions Remain as Volunteer Fire Department Again Raising Funds

Fire Department Used Fake Addresses with ACC Article

For further information, please contact Fire Chief Scott Freitag at 928-308-5130