Prosser Volunteers Told To Leave Immediately - NBC Right Now/KNDO/KNDU Tri-Cities, Yakima, WA |

Prosser Volunteers Told To Leave Immediately

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PROSSER, Wash. - The controversy at the Prosser Fire Department continued Wednesday afternoon when 9 volunteer firefighters received letters in the mailbox requesting their immediate resignation.

A group of about 13 volunteers gave their two week notice at a meeting Monday night.  The group said they do not agree with the way that Fire Chief Doug Merritt manages the department.

The problems reportedly started over 9 months ago after a head firefighter was forced to resign.  Volunteers said tensions only got worse after that.

Resigning Volunteer Tim Stewart said he was not surprised by the letter, but said he was "hurt, kind of disgusted.  We've tried to do the right thing, we've tried to keep it in house and it just fell on deaf ears."

Merritt said Wednesday night that he asked them to leave immediately to protect the unity and safety of the department. 

Some of the volunteers that resigned said they are looking for other firefighting opportunities in other Benton County departments.