L.A. County to Absorb La Habra’s Fire Unit

Times Staff Writer

The Los Angeles County Fire Department will soon be providing protection in La Habra, thanks to a contract with the city that was approved Tuesday by L.A. County supervisors.

The transition will take about six months. All 34 positions in the La Habra Fire Department will be absorbed by L.A. County, providing the personnel meet medical and background checks.

The move by La Habra to reach across the county line for fire services is designed to increase service and save money.


“People in our community don’t care what name is on the Fire Department trucks,” La Habra City Councilman James Gomez said. “They want the service that’s going to take care of them in case of emergency.”

La Habra, an 80-year-old city of 61,000 residents, borders Los Angeles County. Its City Council approved the contract six weeks ago.

City officials say the 10-year, $72-million contract with Los Angeles County will save La Habra about $8 million over that time and will expand the minimum daily staff from nine to 15.

The city’s three fire stations will remain open, and the deal calls for La Habra and the county to build a fourth station within five years.

Gomez said the city also spoke with neighboring cities Brea and Fullerton, which have their own fire department, and the Orange County Fire Authority, but Los Angeles County offered the best deal.