While Jefferson Township Fire Company No. 2 chief Tom Jardines may be in trouble with his superiors at his full-time job as a Port Authority officer, he will not face any disciplinary from the township, according to Mayor Russell Felter.
Jardines was issued a 45-day suspension without pay on Monday for fighting fires and doing other fire department work on days he called out sick from his job, according to a report on nj.com. The suspension came after an investigation was launched last year by the Port Authority inspector general’s office.
“He’s been a good chief, and as far as we know he’s always done everything by the book for Jefferson,” Felter said. “This issue is between him and the Port Authority. It has nothing to do with us. We won't be doing anything.”
Felter said he became aware of the suspension when he was contacted by news media on Monday night. He said he was not previously aware of any action being taken by the Port Authority against Jardines.
Jardines has served as chief of Company No. 2 for two years. He was elected by his peers in the fire department, Felter said, not appointed by the township. His current term expires in December.
On his web page at firengineering.com, Jardines notes that he has been involved in fire service since 1988 and has been a member of several other New Jersey departments, including the West New York and Hackensack ambulance Squads and Bogota First Aid and Emergency Squad.
Jardines could not be reached for comment.
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