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Summit County Council ratifies firing of North Summit fire chief

North Summit Fire District works at a brush fire in 2012. Fire Chief Ian Nelson was terminated by the Summit County Council on Monday.

North Summit Fire District works at a brush fire in 2012. Fire Chief Ian Nelson was terminated by the Summit County Council on Monday. (North Summit Fire District)

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PARK CITY — Without discussing a reason for his firing, the Summit County Council on Monday unanimously approved a recommendation to terminate the contract of North Summit Fire District Chief Ian Nelson.

"The council believes it is important to move in a new direction. Beyond this, we will not discuss the reasons for terminating Mr. Nelson's contract," was part of a statement the board read before taking a vote on the proposal for the chief to be "terminated for cause."

The recommendation was made Saturday by the North Summit Fire District Administrative Control Board.

"The board will make an interim appointment to the position of fire chief as soon as possible, followed by recruitment to permanently fill the vacancy," the group said in a prepared statement.

The volunteer North Summit Fire District serves the towns of Henefer, Echo, Coalville, Upton, Hoytsville and Wanship.

This is the second time in recent years that Nelson has been removed from a position.

He used to be Morgan County's emergency services director and fire director, until he was fired in 2018. In 2019, Nelson sued Morgan County and three council members, claiming he was fired for being a whistleblower. Nelson claimed that he reported to the state auditor's office that a council member had illegally used a fire truck to collect water for his own personal use in 2016.

The lawsuit was dismissed in federal court in August but was filed again in Morgan County's 2nd District Court in October, according to court records. A call placed to Nelson's attorney representing him in the lawsuit was not immediately returned.

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Pat Reavy is a longtime police and courts reporter. He joined the team in 2021, after many years of reporting at the Deseret News and KSL NewsRadio before that.


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