SLO County hires new fire chief
March 9, 2016
Cal Fire has hired a new chief to head the San Luis Obispo County Fire Department. Scotty Jalbert, currently fire chief of the Cal Fire unit that serves Santa Cruz and San Mateo counties, will take over duties in San Luis Obispo County on April 1.
SLO County has contracted out fire services to Cal Fire since 1930.
The San Luis Obispo County fire chief is currently responsible for overseeing fire services for the county, as well as for the city of Pismo Beach and the communities of Los Osos and Avila Beach. Additionally, SLO County’s Cal Fire unit serves the community of Cayucos during non-fire season.
Former chief Robert Lewin retired in December. Lewin then took a position in Santa Barbara County’s Office of Emergency Management.
Both SLO County Administrative Officer Dan Buckshi and Pismo Beach City Manager Jim Lewis had significant input in the decision to appoint Jalbert, a Cal Fire press release states.
“We’re pleased to have Chief Jalbert aboard and know he has the skills and experience to get the job done and help keep county residents safe,” Buckshi said. “He’s known for his integrity, ability to collaborate and effective leadership skills. He’s just what this county needs in its new fire chief.”
Jalbert began his career with Cal Fire as a SLO County firefighter in 1987. Shortly afterwards, he joined the San Mateo-Santa Cruz fire department and rose the ranks to chief.
Currently, Jalbert is also a fire instructor for the City College of San Francisco. He has a fire control vocational teaching credential.
Jalbert will oversee approximately 180 state employees who operate the SLO County Fire Department. They are supplemented by as many as 100 seasonal state firefighters, 300 county paid-call and reserve firefighters and 120 state inmate firefighters.
The Cal Fire news release did not state what Jalbert’s salary will be.