A new $475,000 pump truck leads the fire department’s budget requests for fiscal year 2016-17, which begins July 1.
Fire Chief Tim Guffey told the Town Council’s finance committee on Wednesday that the truck, which pumps 1,500 gallons per minute, would replace a truck purchased in 2002 that would become a reserve engine.
Guffey noted that the National Fire Protection Association, a U.S. trade association that maintains standards and codes for fire departments, recommends engines more than 15 years old be placed in reserve status.
Guffey said the 2002 engine was a relatively inexpensive one designed for use by rural departments, and that it had been maxed out in its usage here.
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“We were putting a lot more wear and tear on a truck that really wasn’t designed to take the wear and tear that we put on it,” Guffey said. “I think it would make a great truck in Franklin County, rural Franklin County, that kind of thing.”
The department is also requesting a Ford F-250 cab pickup for $41,876 for fire inspections, errands around town and trips to classes and training. $13,241 of that expense would be for lights, decals and a radio.
In its capital improvement plan, the department is requesting for fiscal year 2017-18 a Hodge Road substation estimated at more than $2 million. The station, with two bays and a police substation, would serve neighborhoods including Princeton Manor, Mingo Creek, Cheswick, Langston Ridge, Churchill and the backside of Planter’s Walk.
Wake County also is interested in putting an emergency medical services unit at a potential substation, according to the fire department.
For next fiscal year, the department is also requesting seven automated external defibrillators at $2,515 each for a total of $17,605. The department’s current defibrillators are past their life expectancy of 10 years, according to the department.
The old machines would likely be made available around town buildings in case of a cardiac emergency.
The department is also requesting $12,000 for a new multipurpose “jaws of life” vehicle-extrication tool that is more lightweight and easily maneuvered than the department’s current extrication equipment. The department estimates that the new tool would be used in 80 percent of extrications, with the heavier equipment needed for more heavy-duty vehicles such as trucks and buses.
The total budget request by the department is up 58.2 percent from about $1.2 million budgeted for this fiscal year to more than $1.9 million requested for next, the increase largely due to the new engine, pickup and extrication tool.
The Town Council is scheduled to hold a public hearing on the 2016-17 budget at its June 6 meeting and to adopt a budget at its June 15 meeting.
Matt Goad: 919-829-4826