Los Angeles Fire Chief Brian Cummings will retire from his position as head of the city Fire Department, according to Mayor Eric Garcetti and a department spokesman.
Cummings had struggled to restore confidence in his management of the 3,500-employee department after officials admitted last year to misstating emergency-response times, making it appear that rescuers arrived faster than they actually did.
During his campaign, Garcetti said he lacked confidence in the fire chief's leadership and second-guessed a series of the chief's management decisions.
"By mutual agreement, we've come to an understanding on a leadership change with Chief Cummings," Garcetti said in a brief interview as he walked into City Hall on Thursday morning. "He'll be stepping aside as chief."
Cummings previously said he would like to remain chief until at least 2018. His retirement was confirmed by an LAFD spokesman, Battalion Chief Armando Hogan.
When he took office, Garcetti called on the city's top department heads to reapply for their jobs and explain how they would achieve key goals. So far, he has told at least seven they will get to stay, including Gina Marie Lindsey at Los Angeles World Airports and Michael LoGrande at the Department of City Planning.
One high-level executive, Geraldine Knatz at the
When the previous fire chief retired, Villaraigosa picked Cummings to fill the job, praising him as the "visionary architect" of the new staffing plan.
That reputation was undermined after last year's admission of faulty response times when a task force of experts concluded that fire officials charged with managing department statistics under Cummings were poorly qualified and that previous LAFD data analysis "should not be relied upon."
Times investigations found delays in processing 911 calls and summoning the nearest medical rescuers from other jurisdictions, as well as wide gaps in response times in different parts of the city.
Expensive upgrades are already in the works, including the installation of GPS devices on rescue vehicles, the replacement of the 911 call center's faulty dispatch database and fixes to the alarm system that alerts rescuers at the department's 106 fire stations.
The department is also developing a new data analysis unit, modeled on a highly-touted team at the