The Daily Item, Sunbury, PA

November 17, 2012

City panel: Firefighter should get a hearing

By Francis Scarcella
The Daily Item

SUNBURY — Mayor David Persing and City Council members are pushing the Rescue Hose Fire Company to grant a hearing to a Sunbury firefighter the station banned for life.

Rick Sinko on Monday night told City Council he was quitting the fire department that he served for more than 30 years. He blamed Persing for not taking his phone calls related to the ban handed down Oct. 9 in a handwritten statement from Rescue board president Stanley Wirth.

A panel of Rescue members accused Sinko of mishandling funds. No charges have been filed against the former third assistant chief, who has demanded he be allowed to continue fighting fires, assisting the department or be granted a transfer to another station.

Three times, Sinko told City Council, he has requested hearings with Wirth and the fire department, and three times he has been denied.

That inflamed Councilman Todd Snyder.

“We need to find out what is going on here,” he said. “If this man isn’t getting his due process, then we need to step in.”

Persing was not in attendance, but said he was shocked to learn he was the center of attention.

Wirth refuses to comment to The Daily Item about the incident, and Councilman Jim Eister said that isn’t helping the matter.

The entire council agreed and members said they would ask Persing to demand answers from the Rescue Hose Company.