August 20, 2007
Training Center Success Story:
New Strategic Business Plan Offers Contra Costa County Shared Training Center Opportunity
The opportunity for the firefighters and sheriff’s deputies of Contra Costa County (CCC) to train together in a state-of-the-art training facility is within reach. Their current, antiquated forty-year-old site may be replaced by a state-of-the-art training facility. The Office of the Sheriff and the Contra Costa County Fire Protection District has announced that the Interact Business Group (IBG) of Valley Center California will develop a long-term strategic/business plan for a combined training center.
IBG brings successful planning to the County with over fifteen years experience in needs assessment, operations plan, facilities assessment, site requirements, financial assessment, and cost benefit analysis and funding strategies; all items necessary to build a comprehensive, viable public safety training center plan. Development of the strategic/business plan will take around three months to complete.
The state-of-the-art plan for the CCC would also relocate the fire protection district administrative and joint dispatch facilities to the new site. Contra Costa Sheriff Representative Dale Varady advised that it would embrace a shared emergency operations center, fire apparatus repair shop, a driving course, classroom space, and a training tower.
CCC Supervisor Susan Bonilla, a former Concord city councilwoman expressed, “Sharing... space is better for the bottom line,” and, “... you can probably save money because you are using one facility for multiple purposes.”
The City of Concord has been equally positively responsive. Concord’s Reuse Project Director, Mike Wright stated, “This seems like a reasonable use and good idea.” He was also referring to the fact that the departments have a rare opportunity to obtain some land at a discounted price—perhaps even free on part of the Concord Naval Weapons Station, which has recently closed its doors.
Another plus for the project is that the desired location of the land is centrally located in the county, which would serve the citizens and public agencies better. It would be located very close to Port Chicago Highway and Highway 4, allowing for faster freeway access. Noise would not constitute an issue, as the location is currently surrounded by light industrial, and would not be a deterrent to the public.
Assistant Fire Chief Rich Grace for the Fire Protection District further indicated that the new joint training facility “... could be used by the entire region.”
IBG is the recognized national expert for the development of strategic/business plans for the public safety training community. Their Business Plan Process© method is unique. It is a product of research and years of successful projects. IBG President says, “We have developed Business Plans for small departments to large multi-municipal government agencies. The process is a collection of activity segments that when completed comprises a Strategic/Business Plan. We are very honored that the Office of the Sheriff and the Fire Protection District has placed their trust in us to develop their long-term training center road map that will effect future generations.”