The Liberty Township fire chief who had been fighting to keep his job will be returning to work next month, but not as chief.
Tim Jensen, suspended in March for alleged management lapses, including tardiness and failing to follow orders, reached an agreement with township trustees late last week allowing him to return to work on Sept. 7 as a lieutenant in the fire prevention office.
And while he loses his personal sport utility vehicle and fuel stipend, the lower rank actually pays $3,000 more per year, according to the firefighters union contract.
Jensen, who had been making $91,000 annually will now make $94,000. A planned two-day hearing to determine Jensen's employment status began earlier this month and was supposed to resume Sept. 1, following lengthy testimony and scheduling conflicts.
Jensen, chief for six years of the 42-member department and a firefighter there for more than 25 years, has been on paid leave for more than five months while drawing his salary. Legal costs of more than $25,000 also had become an issue.