Checking through the Second Thoughts archives, I stumbled across a May 17, 2008, column titled "Prepare to pay, or prepare for pain," that detailed how the Tracy Fire Department was stretched to its limit and failing to meet response time standards.
Lo and behold, a year after that report, plans are in motion to move two fire stations to improve response times and charge a fee for fire department paramedic services.
These two policies, especially the station relocation, have their roots in documented shortcomings of the past.
And, for the record, I'm no fan of the paramedic fees. The value of your life should not be dependent on the thickness of your wallet.
But, as my most recent column also tried to point out, it's worth understanding some of the reasons why city and fire officials have enacted the policy.