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Hudson Fire Department gets a new full-time chief

Scott St. Martin, the new chief/fire inspector of the Hudson Fire Department, spent 18 years with the St. Paul Fire Department.1 / 2
Alderpersons John Hoggatt, left, and Jim Webber meet new Hudson Fire Chief Scott St. Martin, right, at the conclusion of a City Council meeting Monday night. Hoggatt served on the Advisory Joint Fire Board last term. Webber is the council’s new representative on the Fire Board. (Hudson Star-Observer photo by Randy Hanson)2 / 2

Scott St. Martin was named the new full-time chief/inspector of the volunteer Hudson Fire Department after the City Council approved his salary and benefit package on Monday night.

St. Martin spent 18 years with the St. Paul Fire Department before moving on four years ago to a position with the city’s Department of Safety Inspections, where he did housing and fire inspections and enforced building codes.

He rose to the rank of captain with the fire department before leaving for the inspector position.

The Hudson Police and Fire Commission chose St. Martin to replace Jim Frye, who stepped down as the last volunteer chief of the Hudson Fire Department at the end of 2013.

The City Council decided to combine the position of fire chief with that of fire inspector, and make it full-time, after Frye resigned from the chief's position. The current full-time fire inspector, Dave Krupich, won’t be replaced when he retires at the end of the month.

While the Police and Fire Commission hires the fire chief, the City Council has the power to set the salary and benefits for the position.

The commission is chaired by Thomas O’Connell. The other members are Peter Post, Tom Redner, Robert Staebell and Dale Willi.

St. Martin waited outside the council chambers for a short time Monday night while the council discussed his compensation package. Soon after he was invited into the chambers, the council returned to open session and unanimously approved an annual salary of $68,000 for the fire chief/fire inspector position.

St. Martin will receive three weeks of vacation during the remainder of 2014 and five weeks of vacation next year. He also will receive the standard health insurance and retirement benefits that all full-time city employees receive.

“I’m excited. It’s a great town,” St. Martin said of Hudson while the City Council was behind closed doors talking about his compensation package.

“It’s a great fire department,” he added. “It’s got a rich history. It’s been around for about 140 years. I’m excited to meet with the people.”

He said he had already met with some of the department’s officers.

St. Martin lives in Dellwood, a small city on White Bear Lake in Minnesota. He serves on the city council there.

A native of St. Paul, he attended Humboldt High School and went on to earn a bachelor’s degree in marketing from St. Mary’s University in Winona.

St. Martin is married and has two daughters. The oldest is an engineering student at UW-Milwaukee. The youngest is a high school junior.

He said he expects to relocate to Hudson after his daughter graduates from high school next year.

Randy Hanson

Randy Hanson has reported for the Star-Observer since 1997. He came to Hudson after 11 years with the Inter-County Leader at Frederic, and eight years of teaching social studies. He’s a graduate of UW-Eau Claire.

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