Fayette awarded grant to buy fire truck, training

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FAYETTE — Fire Chief Marty Maxwell is ecstatic over news that the Fire Department will receive a grant of $270,750 to buy a new truck and provide training.

“It’s like Fayette winning the lottery,” he said.

Voters will have to decide whether they want to put in about $14,250 to match the grant at a later date, Maxwell said.

He learned Wednesday that the department had received the grant through the Assistance to Firefighters Grant Program, also known as the Fire Act.

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The department applied for a $285,000 federal grant to help pay for a new firetruck to replace two older trucks.

This grant will allow the Fire Department to buy new, 2,500-gallon tanker engine with a 750-gallon-per-minute pump that meets national standards for effectiveness and safety, Maxwell said.

The grant also provides funding for Emergency Vehicle Operation Certification and pump operations training for all Fayette firefighters, he said. 

He said the grants are very competitive. “We’re competing with everybody across the country.”

The tanker is proposed to replace a 1984 water-tender truck and a 1956 pumper-engine, Maxwell said. Both of the trucks have serious mechanical issues. The 1956 was taken out of service in 2010, Maxwell has said.

The next step is to sit down with the Fire Truck Committee to work out specifications for the truck the department wants and to put out request-for-proposals for the truck, he said.

Dealers began calling his house on Monday, Maxwell said, before he knew the town had won the grant.

“It’s going to be a nice piece of new equipment in the town,” he said. “Everybody is really happy about the grant. We are going to get a truck with everything on it that we want” and that will last for 30 years, he said.

Once the new truck is bought and has arrived, he plans to redo paper work and submit it to see if the town can get its ISO rating reduced and possibly save residents some money on property insurance.

ISO is a leading source of information about property/casualty insurance risk, which insurance companies sometimes use to set insurance rates in different areas.

Since the inception of the FIRE Grant Program in 2003, the Fayette Fire Department has received three grants, including this most recent award, totaling more than $300,000 for purchase of personal protection equipment, air packs, safety gear, radios, pagers, a washer/extractor for cleaning gear, a standby generator and now help to purchase a new tanker engine, according to a news release.

Fayette is part of the Lakes Region Mutual Aid Group that also includes Wayne, Readfield, Mount Vernon, Vienna and Manchester.

dperry@sunjournal.com

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