Idaho Fire Chief's Association, Inc.

Our VISION is to improve career and volunteer emergency services in the state of Idaho through leadership, collaboration, education, safety, information and representation.

Our MISSION is to provide and enhance leadership to career and volunteer emergency services in Idaho.

IFCA President: David Gates

Knute Sandahl Named Idaho State Fire Marshal 
(Posted: 12-17-14)

By Paul Johnson
Boise, Idaho ( KMVT-TV / KSVT-TV ) – The Idaho Department of Insurance announced the appointment of Knute Sandahl as State Fire Marshal. Sandahl’s appointment is effective December 21, 2014. Sandahl has been the Acting Fire Marshal since mid-October.
Department Director Bill Deal says, “Knute has been an asset to the Fire Marshal’s office for the past eight years. He brings a wealth of experience and industry knowledge to his new position, and I am confident that he will continue to do an outstanding job in his new role.”
Sandahl began his career with fire safety in Illinois in 1985 where he was a firefighter and paramedic. His 31-year fire safety career has taken him through the ranks of EMT, Police Commander, Deputy Coroner, and Fire District Captain. He is currently a member of the Society of Fire Protection Engineers.
Sandahl Moved to Idaho in 2005 and was hired by the Idaho State Fire Marshal’s Office in 2006 where he most recently served as Chief Deputy.

Idaho Medal of Honor - 2015 Call for Nominations
(Posted: 11-13-14)

Idaho Medal of Honor Chairman Lawrence Wasden announced the Call for Nominations for the 2015 Idaho Firefighting and EMS Medal of Honor. The deadline for nominations is January 31, 2015. Boise Fire Department will be hosting the Idaho Medal of Honor Ceremony at the Idaho Fallen Firefighter Memorial. The date and time for the event will be announced. Please contact Chief Doan with any questions regarding the nomination process at 208-570-6560 or
Call for nominations:
2015 call for nominations.pdf pdf Document
Nomination Form:
2015 nomination form.pdf pdf Document
2015 Commission Meeting Notice:
2015 meeting notice.pdf


IFCA Board Holds Fall Board Meeting
(Posted: 11-8-14)

The IFCA Board of Directors held its Fall Board meeting on Monday, November 3rd at the Shoshone Bannock Hotel & Event Center in Fort Hall.  The Board toured the spacious two-year old Native American themed facility which will be the site of the 2015 Annual Conference April 30 - May2.  Board business included a review of several teleconference calls relating to proposed changes in the Constitution and By-Laws (C&BL's); receipt of two RFP's for association management which will be further reviewed by a select Board committee; discussion of the 2015 Annual Conference plans which will likely be taking on an EMS theme; and a report on the continued success of the Fire Fighter License Plate Grant program.  There was considerable discussion relating the SAFER grant which the IFCA failed to receive last year and whether to seek a grant in 2015.  One of the highlights of the C&BL's will be a proposal to shift from members being present at the annual conference to vote to an advance nomination process using a Nominations and Elections Committee and all members being able to vote by an electronic ballot via the internet.  The Board will convene again in January in Boise for their 2015-2017 Strategic Planning Session.


The IFCA extends its warmest wishes for a
safe and happy holiday season to one and all.
Crude Oil by Rail Course Offered
(Posted: 9-12-14)

Due to several Bakken Oil train accidents around the country in the past year, several rail companies and national organizations have started training programs for emergency responders. The Association of American Railroad’s Security and Emergency Response Training Center (SERTC) is now offering Crude By Rail Emergency Response at their facility in Colorado. The 3-day training covers types of crude transported by rail, types of tank cars, spill control, and tactical considerations. The training concludes with a derailment and fire exercise. So far, 1,500 first responders from at least nine states have taken the training. Please see the course page for more information on prerequisites, travel information, items students should bring, and other details. This course is filled through the rest of 2014; there are instructions on the course page for those interested in 2015 offerings. For departments or personnel interested in SERTC’s courses, there is a grant program available to help with the course fees. The U.S. Department of Transportation’s Pipeline and Hazardous Materials Safety Administration (PHMSA) offers Hazardous Materials Emergency Preparedness grants to states, territories, and tribal responders to use for hazardous materials incident training. For details and to apply, visit PHMSA’s Hazardous Materials Grant Program page

(Source: SERTC)



Job Opportunities

Details on most fire service jobs in Idaho may be found at this link:

and you may then directly contact the agency offering the position.

Success! FRF Contribution Rate Cut

(Posted:  9-19-14) 

Cities and fire districts had a huge weight lifted from their shoulders on September 16th after the state’s pension oversight board voted to reduce the amount those entities pay for some firefighters’ retirements. The Public Employee Retirement System of Idaho (PERSI) board voted to cut the contribution rate cities including Boise, Idaho Falls and Nampa pay for retirees still in the Firefighters Retirement Fund (FRF), a closed pension account with 550 retirees. The move, which will reduce contributions to the fund from 17.24 percent to 5 percent, frees up $7.7 million for 22 different government entities. Some of Idaho’s biggest cities reap the most from the board’s decision. Boise’s contributions drop by nearly $3 million annually; Nampa’s drop about $827,000; Idaho Falls’ contributions fall by $894,000. The Whitney Fire Protection District, which serves 18 square miles in south Boise, will save the least, with the board’s vote cutting the department’s contributions by $8,000 annually. The fund relies on two main sources of income: The contributions and taxes sliced from fire insurance premiums. Analysts from Milliman believe the fund holds $317 million in liabilities, compared with about $352 million in assets.  Moving forward, PERSI Executive Director Don Drum told board members there’s between a 60 and 80 percent chance the panel never has to increase the contribution rate from the 5 percent. Only a steep drop in investment earnings would force members to reconsider the fire fund’s funding mechanisms.  Across the state, officials differ on how to use the freed-up funds.  City officials in Boise are looking at using their slice to fund high-dollar bonds for fire and other public safety improvements.

"Everyone Goes Home"

The United States Fire Administration has released an outstanding video called "Everyone Goes Home." This is a film produced by the National Fallen Firefighters Foundation in cooperation with the Chicago Fire Department. See or download it at this link:

This video should be required viewing by all firefighters.

Support WFCA's Fire-Rescue GPO
Saving money should be at the top of every chief's list of things-to-do. The power of group purchasing and pre-qualified contracts saves departments time and money when purchasing a wide range of fire equipment and items of everyday use. We encourage all of our members to take advantage of the WFCA's Group Purchasing Organization (GPO) program. A percentage of your purchase benefits the IFCA so please consider using this program for your department purchases.

FREE subscription to the Idaho Daily Dispatch 
Receive email news briefs on state and national fire/EMS news, job openings, used fire equipment, courses and more delivered to your desktop every weekday. This is an excellent way to stay "in the know" and to improve your situational awareness. To subscribe just use this link:, or to place an ad go to:

NOTE: Credit for the accident photo in the IFCA home page banner goes to Sylvia's Photography of Middleton (ID). Thanks David & Sylvia!


2014 Federal Legislation Recap

DESPITE SOME SET BACKS, FIRE SERVICE SCORES SEVERAL VICTORIES ON CAPITOL HILL IN 2014The 113th Congress has come to an end, with lawmakers returning home after a brief "lame-duck" session of Congress.



Holiday Safety and Security

Personal and Facility Safety During the Holidays The hustle and bustle of holiday travel, family visits, shopping trips, and community events often distracts us from personal security. Unfortunately,



Boise Firefighters benefitting from union membership

Burning question: How much should Boise firefighters make?As the city negotiates a labor contract, pay is scrutinized - and defendedBy SVEN BERGNovember 9, 2014   Boise's fire budget tells t

please join today!

Membership classes include Active, Corporate, Division or Master.
Divisions include: EMS, Fire Prevention, Training and Volunteer
Help us to help you - knowledge is power


2015 Membership Application and Renewal form:

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Member of the Western Division of the IAFC