Council unanimously affirms Beck as Mesa fire chief - East Valley Tribune: News

Council unanimously affirms Beck as Mesa fire chief

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Posted: Tuesday, February 25, 2003 7:56 am | Updated: 2:04 pm, Thu Oct 6, 2011.

Phoenix deputy fire chief Harry Beck is Mesa’s new fire chief.

The City Council voted 7-0 Monday affirming Beck’s appointment.

Last week, City Manager Mike Hutchinson selected Beck over six other applicants, including four Mesa assistant fire chiefs. A citizen’s committee also recommended Beck for the job.

"I promise I won’t let you or the citizens of Mesa down in this process," Beck told the council Monday. His wife, father, and other family members attended the meeting.

Beck, 49, is scheduled to take over March 31 at an annual salary of $127,000. He replaces former Mesa Fire Chief Dennis Compton, who retired in October after 30 years.

Beck was hired as a firefighter by the Phoenix Fire Department in 1973. He became a deputy fire chief in 1984.

The Mesa Fire Department has a $42 million budget and 450 employees.

In other action, the council voted unanimously to approve an agreement with the Gila River Indian Community that will bring the city 30,645 acre-feet of fresh water a year — an amount that can supply more than 100,000 residents.

A number of agencies in Arizona also must agree to the terms, including irrigation districts and other cities. The agreement also must be approved by Congress.

Mesa should begin receiving the water between 2006 and 2008.

An acre-foot equals 325,872 gallons, typically enough to satisfy the needs of a family of four for a year. Mesa, with a population of more than 400,000, uses a about 100,000 acrefeet of water per year.

The Gila River Indian Community, established by Congress in 1859, began a legal battle for Colorado River water in 1924. The community claimed users upstream illegally diverted water. Efforts to settle the dispute began in earnest in the 1980s.

The council also voted unanimously to approve a study to gauge how a population boom in northern Pinal County would affect the region.

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