The first outward sign of the former Martinez-Columbia Fire Rescue becoming a county department came in a box of new Columbia County Fire Rescue patches.
The new patches will don the arms of staff jackets, button-up shirts and dress uniforms.
Otherwise, the Jan. 1 changeover from a county contractor providing fire service to a county-run fire department has taken place behind the scenes.
“It was smooth,” fire department spokesman Jeremy Wallen said. “Operations stayed the same. ... Realistically, I didn’t anticipate it not being smooth.”