GRETHEL, Ky. (WSAZ) -- The new fire chief of the Mud Creek Fire Department in Floyd County is coming under fire a week after taking the job.
During Monday night’s meeting of the Fire Department Board of Trustees, a number of people called for the dismissal of Chief Curtis Tackett.
Bobbie McKinney, the board's treasurer, said Tackett is ineligible to be chief because the position requires at least a year's experience with the department.
McKinney also says that Tackett can't drive department vehicles while he is on a four-month probation period.
"Taxpayer money pays the insurance on the vehicle, which the insurance company which I spoke with today told me that we're placing ourselves at a very big risk," said McKinney.
Tackett defended himself, saying he's protected by state law.
"I'm a 12-year veteran of the fire department,” said Tackett "I've been on Left Beaver for 12 years; I've got all kinds of certifications."
Nicholas Martin, the board's chairman, defended the decision to hire Tackett.
"He's interested in helping, he didn't need all this publicity, didn't need all this aggravation, because it's hard to take this chief spot," said Martin. “This community needs people to come together. Leave your differences at the door," said one man, voicing the frustrations of several community members in attendance."
Other issues discussed at the meeting included discrepancies in the department's e-dispatch alert system, and whether the new chief had issued new keys to the building that may have caused delays responding to a fire Saturday morning.
"The firefighters had to break a lock off the fire department to get access to the fire,” said McKinney.
Martin says the board will consult the county attorney before deciding how to move forward and try to resolve this conflict.