John Jennings (left) is congratulated by Police Chief Ricardo Mancha after being named Bridgeview Fire Chief. (Photo by Steve Metsch)

John Jennings (left) is congratulated by Police Chief Ricardo Mancha after being named Bridgeview Fire Chief. (Photo by Steve Metsch)

Acting no more, Jennings named Bridgeview Fire Chief

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By Steve Metsch

After a year on the job, John Jennings can remove “acting” from his title.

Jennings, 53, was officially named fire chief by the Bridgeview Village Board at its Feb. 16 meeting. The vote was unanimous.

“I’m very proud to be the chief,” Jennings, 53, said. “I work with a bunch of great guys. Great community.”

Jennings, of Oak Lawn, has been with the department for 25 years. He had been named acting fire chief in February 2021.

“Every time you take a step up, you learn things,” Jennings said. “Went from hands-on to more administrative. It’s rewarding. A different kind of rewarding.”

“You get a better concept of how village government works,” Jennings said. “Now, I work more with the public works director, with the clerk’s office.”

In other business, the board approved the purchase of a 2022 Ford Escape Electric Hybrid from Currie Motors for $29,128.

“It’s something new for us and will be utilized just around town and not necessarily taken on road trips,” trustee James Cecott said.

The board also approved the 2022 employee health insurance benefits renewal with Blue Cross Blue Shield of Illinois.

“There’s an increase of 8.94 percent. It started out at 21 percent. But it’s a great health plan and our employees deserve the best,” Trustee Michael Pticek said.

The board approved hiring Paschen Construction to make needed roof repairs to Fire Station 2. The repairs will cost $33,389.

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