IAFF Endorsements
At the December Executive Board meeting, Local 2881 Leadership met with candidates for the IAFF General President and 10th District VP. After thorough discussion, the candidates endorsed were chosen based on their new ideas to support you, our members. These candidates will bring a fresh start to our great IAFF.
In mid-November, we endorsed our current 10th District VP Frank Lima, for the position of IAFF General Secretary-Treasurer. His proven leadership and integrity will benefit all members of the IAFF.
49ers Jimmy Garoppolo chose the CAL FIRE Benevolent Foundation for the #MyCauseMyCleats campaign. His cleats also honor seven of our fallen:
Braden Varney, Cory Iverson, Paul Rotondaro, Steve Casados, Jason Pollard, and Bob Wolf.
Thank you, Jimmy!
Get to Know Your DVP
Scott Witt
We asked DVP Scott Witt a few questions to help our members get to know him better.

Q. What is your current role in CAL FIRE Local 2881?
A. I am the District IX VP. District IX is the smallest yet most diverse in membership. We have new seasonal employees up to the Department’s highest-ranking members across various Dept Programs like Fire, Resource Management, Aviation, Fleet, Training, Supervisors, Managers, and Executive. I support membership activity in Sacramento, Davis, and at the Training Center in Ione. The connections that I make at my local level also play across many State Programs.

Q. How long have you been involved in Local 2881?
A. I have been a member since 1994. I was asked to help support the membership of District IX as soon as I transferred from the Santa Clara Chapter in 2015.  

Q. What union officer positions have you held?
A. When I promoted to Battalion Chief in SCU, I developed a great working relationship with then Chapter Director Chucke Carrol. I stressed the importance of supporting the MOU agreement and not allowing disputes or grudges to taint the relationship between Labor and Management. I’ve served as Rank & File and Supervisory Rep. in District IX before taking the helm as DVP from GVP Pete Munoa.

Q. Why is it important to be involved in Local 2881?
A. Every day, your Union officers actively fight for your rights, whether you know it or not. Daily, you have a team of lobbyists, lawyers, officers, and thousands of members supporting YOU! They are protecting your rights and making sure that you and your family are protected. I spend my time protecting your wages, benefits, and working conditions. I need members to step up into leadership positions to continue the fight.

Q. What union accomplishments are you most proud of?
A. I am most proud of supporting you. I spend my time supporting our members at local hospitals and burn centers. My time is spent at funerals honoring our departed Brothers & Sisters. My time is spent supporting your wives and husbands, parents and children, and fellow co-workers when you are unable to. I am proud that membership has dramatically increased in District IX among our department leadership and underrepresented classes – if you pay dues, you should have a voice!

Q. Looking ahead for Local 2881
A. We are in tough economic times. President Tim Edwards is a shepherd to your Union dollars/dues… money is NOT wasted. Your CFO Paul Van Gerwen is squeezing every penny until it squeals. I know we have dedicated bargaining teams fighting for our wages, benefits, and working conditions. State Supervisory Rep Joe Ten Eyke is engaged with Director Porter to support all of our Supervisors and Managers. State Rank & File Rep Darren Dow is fighting for you daily. We are about to enter a new round of MOU negotiations, and I couldn’t be happier with your representatives. District IX has had trouble recruiting new officers; I’m happy to have Deputy DVP Mike Moran assisting me, as well as several new and very active members supporting District IX.

if you have any questions for DVP Witt, feel free to reach out by email:
Is your station getting into the holiday spirit?

CAL FIRE CZU Station 58 is!

Send us photos of you decorating your station so we can share them with the community.

Email your photos to Communications Officer
An update from your L2881 Honor Guard
The CAL FIRE Local 2881 Honor Guard Drum Major's Mace has finally arrived! This project was a few years in the making, not helped by pandemic shutdowns and such.

It represents California, CAL FIRE L2881, the Honor Guard and stays within the Honor Guard's clean, "no-frills" style. L2881 Drum Major Ray Martinez designed the mace, working closely with Pipe Major Charlie Martin. The mace is used to communicate music and marching commands to the band. Drum Major maces have been in existence since the 17th century.

This mace will be used for many years to come to honor and represent our fallen. It will look beautiful next to the Drum Major's Baldric.

Great job Ray and Charlie!
Interested in joining the HG Band?
Community Education Series (12-1:30PM EST) - Open to Public
Speaker: Molly Jones, LSW
Community Education Series (12-1:30PM EST) - Open to Public
-Speakers: Molly Jones, LSW
Mindset: The established set of attitudes held by someone
The key to a healthy mindset is attitude, which can be driven by stress management.
Many of our CAL FIRE Personnel have been on duty for over 60 days this year, and CAL FIRE Incident Management Teams have been committed for over 100 days. The 2020 California Lightning Siege and the historic fire activity that has occurred over the last several months, in combination with COVID-19, have placed historical demands on our Department's resources.
Our Most Important Resources are our Employees.
As our First Responders and personnel are able to rest and return to their home-stations (and in some cases offices) after extended deployments, stress management is key to health, wellness, injury prevention, and sustainability. And critical to stress management are awareness and acceptance.
There is still work in front of us for 2020. The demands of emergency response are not going anywhere. We have to work diligently to be ready to perform by employing Radical Self-Care.
The question is: what does Radical Self-Care look like for you? Radical Self-Care is taking personal responsibility to prioritize yourself so that you can take care of others. Competing priorities in life such as your job, taking care of loved ones, and maintaining your household can empty your cup.

What can you do during your rest days, rest intervals, and time off that helps you refill your cup and recharge your spirit to return with a healthy mindset each day? When this question was posed to a recent Company Officer Academy class, some of the answers were: go fishing, read an inspirational book, listen to my favorite song on repeat while I drive home, take a 30 minute break on my drive home to enjoy the view and breathe out the stress of recent assignments. Radical Self-Care techniques can be simple; they just have to work for you. 
We challenge you to ask this question of yourself and your crew this month. Share what you do both on and off-duty to employ Radical Self-Care as we all help the entire Department build a lifestyle of resiliency. Share with @CALFIREWELLNESS

If you have Questions, email us at
CAL FIRE ESS 24hr Helpline: (916) 445-4337

EAP 24hr Helpline: (866) 327-4762
MADE SF will be donating 100% of the profits from the sale of their CAL FIRE tees to CAL FIRE Benevolent Foundation
Behavioral Health & Cancer Awareness Curriculum Series
Published: October 2020
Behavioral Health and Cancer Awareness 1A: Front-Line Responder (2020) (PDF) is an 8-hour course and is the first in the series of courses intended to address the need for creating an Awareness level course (firefighter, crew member). This course is available to be included within the Fire Fighter 1A: Structure (PDF) course plan. 

Behavioral Health and Cancer Awareness 2A: First-Level Supervisor (2020) (PDF) is a 24-hour course intended to provide leadership-level information and best practices for cancer mitigation and behavioral health for the aspiring Company Officer and fire service leaders. 

Behavioral Health and Cancer Awareness 3A: Organizational Leader (2020) (PDF) is a 24-hour course intended to provide chief-officer-level information on developing inclusive cancer prevention and behavioral health and wellness programs.

More information on the courses can be found on the Behavioral Health and Cancer Awareness Implementation Plan (PDF).

More important SFT updates:

State Fire Training Fee Update

In 2019, the State Board of Fire Service (SBFS) and Statewide Training and Education Advisory Committee (STEAC) approved the State Fire Training (SFT) Fee Report (PDF) which outlined the need to adjust the fees for several SFT services. On September 3, 2020, these new fees were adopted into regulation and were filed with the Secretary of State, which will become effective on January 1, 2021. 

All certification applications and courses which occur on or after January 1, 2021, will follow the updated 2021 Fee Schedule (PDF)
Video: Fire at Russian Fireworks Factory Sets off Display
More than 400 firefighters responded to the incident at a factory in Rostov-on-Don, and raw video from the scene captured the spectacular and inadvertent fireworks display.

A fire that broke out at a Russian firework factory early Sunday, setting off a spectacular pyrotechnic display.

More than 400 firefighters responded to the incident at a 4,300-square-foot fireworks factory in Rostov-on-Don, Global News reports. Raw video from the scene captured the colorful, exploding fireworks.

From the CAL FIRE Department Safety Officer
Trouble the Dog
Where There's Trouble, There's Hope. Meet the dog who inspires and helps children beat adversity.
The Kennek Foundation, a 501(c)(3) organization, is dedicated to bringing about hope, resilience and inspiration in the lives of those most vulnerable going through tough times.

The Foundation works much of its magic through the adorable plush pup, Trouble the Dog. Distributed to first responders through the generosity of Foundation donors, Trouble is a valuable source of comfort to children facing crisis situations — a “tool in the toolbox” — of police, fire, and ambulance personnel that can make all the difference to a child.

Sheila Duncan of the KenneK Foundation generously donated 50 Trouble the Dog plush toys to CAL FIRE Local 2881 in the hope that our members can give Trouble to a child in need or use it for themselves like other firefighters and first responders as seen in this video.

If you would like a Trouble the Dog for your station please email Communications Officer DeeDee Garcia.
What do you think about the single-layer pant? Share your thoughts with us via the survey link below.

Did you just recently retire or are you planning on retiring at the end of 2020?

Make sure to sign up to be a CAL FIRE Local 2881 Retired Member and stay in the know!

Reach out to Danielle
Retiree Corner
I previously mentioned the validation process employed by CalPERS to verify continued eligibility of benefits. This information adds a little more explanation of the intent to assure appropriate benefits continue for everyone eligible and to assure inappropriate payouts are canceled.

This statement is an excerpt of an information email I received meant to inform all the constituent groups of the continuing program.

“For the second consecutive year, CalPERS is validating the benefit eligibility of CalPERS payees by confirming their status as a living benefit recipient. For this year, the population being validated is a random sample of roughly 2,700 US based payees, representing a very small percentage of our annuitants, who have been retired at least 5 years. For a payee to be considered validated, they must complete and sign a Certification of Eligibility for Payment form in the presence of a notary or their allowance may be placed on hold. If a notary is not available to complete the form, CalPERS will also accept a letter from a treating physician stating that you are in their care, a letter from a care facility or a stamped certification from a bank representative. 
If you have any questions or concerns, please let us know.”

I also mentioned the IRMAA process for members currently paying additional premiums for your medicare coverage and also for members seeking additional reimbursement for the first time. This information has been updated by CalPERS and is shown below for your use.

Members may upload their SSA notification document(s) for themselves and their dependents/spouses online. To do this:
Log in to your myCalPERS account. If you do not yet have an account, you may create one by following this link.
·     Go to the Health tab
·     Select the Health Plan Summary tab and scroll to the Health Deductions section
·     Select the Submit Documents link to upload your documents easily and securely

CalPERS has announced the following relative to the January 2021 posting date for all retired members:
“Direct deposit posts the first business day of the month after the monthly benefit is issued. Although the December 2020 monthly benefit is issued on January 1, 2021, the first business day of the month is January 4, 2021. 
IRS regulations require that no more than 12 monthly payments can be issued in a calendar year, and no more than one payment can be issued in a month.   
We post these dates for the calendar year through myCalPERS. You can also view these dates on the Pay Days page of our website.” 

I am still working on my mailing list for distribution of information on a daily/weekly basis, depending on the nature of the information. If you have previously sent me your email address, you need do nothing more. I have all of your emails held in queue while I learn how to do this distribution without compromising your personal information. I expect to have this completed in a few days. When I do, there will be a general announcement so you know that the distribution has started. If then you have not received anything from me, resend you information to my email address and you’ll be added.

Best wishes to all and I do hope each of you have a very merry Christmas and a more prosperous new year in 2021. I know I’m ready to put 2020 in my rearview mirror.

Ray Snodgrass
State Retiree Director

As a reminder, all members can access their health information year-round, by logging in to myCalPERS, or learn more by visiting the CalPERS “Using myCalPERS” page.
From Our Friends
With Personal Exposure Reporting from California Professional Firefighters, firefighters can document exposures to toxins that can produce job-related illness.
Holiday treats for sharing
Gingerbread Rolls

With molasses, cream cheese topping, need we say more?

Get the recipe here.

The Most Chocolate Pudding

For when you have a sweet tooth at the station.

Get the recipe here.
Is your physical/mailing address updated with us?

Did you get the Winter 2020 Fire Front mailed to your home recently? If not, then we don't have your current address.

It's important for us to have it in case you are impacted or may be impacted by a wildfire or other emergency. Use the link below, call or email us to update it today!

(916) 609-8711 /
Has your marital status changed? Update your L2881 beneficiary information with us today and keep your loved ones secure. Fill out this form and send it to Danielle @
Share your photos & videos with us.

What does your CAL FIRE look like? Help up show the #AllRisk CAL FIRE. Send us a DM on social media or reach out to DeeDee, your Communications Officer at (916) 202-0553

Sending any content to us means you have read & agree to CAL FIRE Local 2881's Terms & Conditions of Use







MARCH 16-18

MARCH 21-26

Provides funds for immediate life sustaining assistance to firefighters and their families who have suffered debilitating injury or loss of life.

Check out our new website

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Look in the winter edition of the Fire Front magazine for an update from the museum.

Don't forget to sign up for their newsletter too!

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