Cumberland County fire services co-ordinator Mike Carter talks to municipal council at a recent meeting.
UPPER NAPPAN – The Pugwash Fired Department will soon have a newly renovated rescue truck in their fleet.
County council passed a motion to purchase the truck during their bi-weekly meeting of council Wednesday afternoon in Upper Nappan.
“It’s a used truck being renovated,” said warden Keith Hunter.
The truck is from a fire department outside Cumberland County, and costs $70,000 plus tax.
We have a fire protection reserve and the money is coming out of that,” said Hunter. “I think there’s about $600,000 in that reserve right now.”
Cumberland County fire service coordinator Mike Carter spoke to council before they voted on the motion to provide funding for the truck.
Carter pointed out that the $70,000 is less than the $150,000 in the original strategic plan.
He then explained how expenses could quickly build up.
“For instance, if a motor or pump goes out on one of these big diesel trucks you’re looking at a $20,000 plus fix.”
Carter and council agreed to work on problems as they arise.
“My only concern…was that there would be more fire departments saying, ‘they have a new truck we want a new one,’” said Hunter. “As long as we deal with the emergency issues that’s great, I have no problems with that.”
Carter said the fire departments under his jurisdiction are careful how they spend money.
“I don’t think we’re taking this lightly,” said Carter. “People can always try to justify what they want, but we need them to justify why they want it. If you can justify it to me, then I’ll back you up.”
He also talked about shifting priorities between and within different fire departments.
“I don’t think everybody needs a $150,000 rescue truck. You have to take each area into consideration,” said Carter. “Another thing is, since I started in this position we’ve had a turnover of people and there have been different ideas.”
District 4 councilor Allison Gillis, whose district encompasses Pugwash, then made a motion.
“I would like to make a motion that council approve the purchase of this rescue vehicle in the amount of $70,000 plus taxes for the Pugwash Fire Department.”
Council then passed the motion.