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Published July 27th, 2016
Weil Will Not Run for Reelection in November
Longtime MOFD director Fred Weil, second from left, has been an advocate for fairness. Photo Nick Marnell

Moraga-Orinda Fire District director Fred Weil stunned the audience at the July 20 district board meeting when he announced that he will not seek reelection to his Division 2 seat in November.
"It is important that a board member be fully committed to a four-year term without distraction, and I am not in a position to do that," said Weil, citing personal reasons for his decision.
Weil has served on the district board since 2003 and has long advocated for excellence in the MOFD service model and for fairness in dealings with district residents and its employees. He pushed for a competitive wage for the firefighters and he balked at any mention of service cutbacks, even once lecturing the board that it was more focused on saving money than on providing long-term service. As recently as June, as the board listened to a presentation on prefunding district retirement costs, Weil warned that properly running the district came first.
"He did a solid job helping our district through good times and bad times, and he always treated us fairly," said firefighters' union representative Mark DeWeese.
Weil often criticizes what he perceives to be sloppy performance, including that of other public agencies. He lashed out at PG&E for what he termed an inadequate response to the sinkhole that disrupted Moraga in March. Weil blamed Contra Costa County leadership for the collapse of fire station 46, a joint venture with the Contra Costa County Fire Protection District that was estimated to save the district $1 million a year in operating costs. Even so, Supervisor Candace Andersen praised Weil's "commitment to MOFD and strong desire to keep the citizens of Moraga and Orinda safe."
"Fred will be a tough act to follow," said long-time fellow board member John Wyro.
Weil does have his detractors. A grassroots group faulted Weil for his part in the improper calculation of Fire Chief Peter Nowicki's pension in 2009, costing the district millions of dollars over the chief's retirement period, and in 2015 demanded Weil's ouster from the board. "As long as he remains a member of the MOFD board, his judgment will be questioned," said Steve Cohn, group spokesman. Cohn declined to comment on Weil's announcement.
"I have enjoyed this immensely," Weil said. "Whoever my successor will be, I hope will enjoy the opportunities as much as I have."

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