2 fire district commission spots on line

Fire District 10, County Fire & Rescue seats at issue

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Two fire district commissioner positions, with younger challengers facing older incumbents, are at stake in two fire departments that reach all the way from Ridgefield, La Center and Battle Ground to the greater Amboy area.

In Fire District 10, based in Amboy, Danny L. Walling, commissioner for the past six years, is facing an election race against Gerard Brintz.

Walling is a retired fire captain with the district with 20 years in the fire service, and a retired U.S. Army officer with more than 20 years of military experience. He’s been active in community service including the North County Lions Club and Amboy Territorial Days, according to an election pamphlet.

He said he wants to make sure that the taxes residents pay for emergency services are used properly; that more volunteer firefighters are recruited, well-trained and kept; and that citizens are kept in the loop.

More than a year ago, after his family moved into the area, Brintz was accepted as a volunteer firefighter.

“Since then,” he said in the pamphlet, “we as a team have extinguished several house fires and helped on an unfortunately large number of medical calls.”

He added: “I live in District 10, serve in District 10 and will keep the levy you pay helping the people of District 10.”

Clark County Fire & Rescue board chairman Gerald “Jerry” Kolke is up against Walter “Frank” Mazna, a man who has seen a lot of emergencies.

“In my nine years as fire commissioner, the fire district has experienced many improvements,” Kolke said in the pamphlet, “including: water rescue services, additional career and volunteer firefighter staffing, grant funding for equipment and personnel, a fire district merger, commercial and residential growth, sustained paramedic response, and much more.”

Kolke said he worked 40 years in retail farm supply, including as business manager, in Battle Ground.

His opponent, Mazna, is a career fire captain with the Vancouver Fire Department.

“With my 25 years in emergency services, I have seen the fire service from many points of view,” Mazna said, “as a citizen, a volunteer, a paramedic on a transport ambulance, a career firefighter and a former fire commissioner.”

He added: “I have a unique combination of functional and practical experience to be your voice on the board of commissioners.”

John Branton: 360-735-4513 or john.branton@columbian.com.