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Lathrop Manteca hiring firefighters for River Islands
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Within a matter of months, the Lathrop Manteca Fire District’s fifth fire station will be online. 

And they need firefighters in order to staff it. 

This past week the agency – which will be moving its headquarters to the new River Islands Fire Station that is expected to be completed within several months and open before summer – began advertising for full-time firefighters interested in working for the district. 

Currently the district is paying for six full-time firefighter engineer positions with its portion of the proceeds from Measure C – the one cent sales tax increase approved by Lathrop voters to help pay for essential city services. An agreement between the city and the district guarantees that 40 percent of all funds generated will go to the district, and more than $5 million was taken in last year – more than double the initial overall projections of $2 million in the first year that the tax was in effect. 

Because the district generates a large portion of its overall budget from annual property taxes, the economic downturn hit the agency harder than most – the drop in home values over a period of several years severely impacted revenues, and when voters turned down a parcel tax increase that would have rectified the situation, Fire Chief Gene Neely was forced to eliminate positions and strategically brown out rural stations that they couldn’t staff full-time. 

Those eliminated positions were brought back with grant funding, and Measure C provided a more permanent funding source to ensure that even if the grant funding went away, the positions could remain. 

Now, with the River Islands station due to come online, the agency will be bolstering its roster to meet the demands of a growing community. An engine company will be the first to locate in the new state-of-the-art facility and plans to add a truck company are already in place – once a certain number of homes are built in the master planned community, the district will place the order for the apparatus and begin making plans to turn the station into its first with two separate, around-the-clock companies.

With a salary range from $46,300.80 to $55,123.28, the entry-level positions include a comprehensive benefit package, the positions are being advertised on social media and applications are available on the district website at

To contact reporter Jason Campbell email or call 209.249.3544.