The Pacific Fire Protection District says it’s gratified at the passing of a $1.5 million bond issue in the April 8 election, according to Fire Chief Rick Friedmann.
Voters approved a no-tax increase bond issue with 1,322 yes votes, or 75 percent, to 434 no votes.
“It felt good that our taxpayers have confidence in us,” Friedmann said. “But we were really gratified at the percentage of votes we got.”
There are several steps to be followed before the fire district can begin to spend the funds.
Votes must be certified by both Franklin and St. Louis counties, then certified by the state auditor.
After that, the district’s financial adviser, Joy Howard, will begin to prepare the paperwork for the sale of the bonds.
“They tell me it will take about 90 days before the bond sale takes place,” Friedmann said.
Because of an IRS rule that 5 percent of the bond money must be spent within a limited time, the district will upgrade the rescue equipment listed in the bond issue request first.
“That’s the easiest to get done,” Friedmann said. “And we think that will take care of the 5 percent.”
The second and third purchases will be the purchase of self-contained breathing apparatuses and a new truck.
“Those are actually our two top priorities because that’s the equipment our guys need to do the job,” the chief said.
The purchase of thermal imaging equipment will follow and finally the construction of a building.
“We will do the building last so we’re sure of our projected costs on the equipment,” Friedmann said. “We think we’re OK on the cost of the equipment. We planned high. But if we had to we could scale the building back. We’d rather do that than short any of the equipment. That’s our priority.”
Once everything is in place, construction of the building can start.
“We’re looking at some time in the summer of 2015,” Friedmann said.