OXFORD – Despite claims that a new truck could be bought for the same price, voters at a special town meeting Thursday agreed to buy a used firetruck for up to $130,000.

Resident Brian Hogan, who has donated numerous used firetrucks to towns over the years, said Oxford could have a new truck for the same price if it was willing to use local talent to build the chassis and later install the tank.

The town of Naples has purchased several trucks in this fashion, he said, at considerable savings.

But voters decided there were too many unknowns to Hogan’s proposal, and voted down his amendment to apply the $130,000 toward a new firetruck.

At the June town meeting, the Fire Department asked for a new truck, but voters turned it down because of the $300,000 price tag.

Since then, the pumper has failed on the department’s 1975 pumper truck, and it had to be retired from service. The failure made the need for a replacement more urgent, so the Fire Department began looking into a used pumper truck.

It found a 1995 Cyclone II custom pumper formerly owned by the city of North Port, Fla. It has about 45,000 miles, and no known accidents.

The department will contract with a fire engine supply service to have the truck delivered to Oxford.

Repairs to the 1975 pumper would cost upward of $60,000, and Fire Chief Fred Knightly advised against the repairs, saying the town could put the engine out to bid.

“She served us well. It’s time to get rid of it,” he said.

The truck will be purchased under a five-year lease agreement, which will use $45,000 in a fire truck reserve account, said interim Town Manager Sharon Jackson.

The truck comes with a six-month warranty, and the lease agreement will provide further protection to the town on the purchase, selectmen agreed.


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