GODFREY - Faced with two close to 50-year-old fire stations that were designed to last 30 years, both needing major repairs on leaking roofs, foundations, structural, electrical, and plumbing issues, the Godfrey Fire Protection District board of trustees unanimously voted to place a $7.5 million bond proposal on the April 6 ballot.
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The proposal, if passed, will fund the construction of a single centrally located fire station plus updated essential emergency equipment including cardiac monitors and firefighter turnout gear," Godfrey Fire Protection District Chief Eric Cranmer said. "It would also allow the district to replace antiquated vehicles that are increasingly expensive to maintain.
“It doesn’t take long when walking through our current fire stations to see the very real challenges we face every day with storage of medical supplies, lack of training space, worn-out electrical, mechanical, and plumbing systems, and not enough room for our apparatus and firefighters. For example, during rain and snow melt, our firefighters must continually wipe down the apparatus, sometimes for several days following, to remove and prevent further rust stains due to the leaking roofs. We struggle to keep medical and other supplies dry. And, we are continually mopping up water on the floor that creates slippery and unsafe conditions.”
The bond proposal would allow the district to build an up-to-date fire station at 3023 Godfrey Road, which is centrally located near the intersection of Godfrey Road and Homer Adams Parkway. The station would house the same number of firefighters per shift as the two stations currently house together.
“We looked at every option available,” said District board of trustees President Terry Ford. “The bottom line is that any attempt to renovate our two existing stations was not a good way to spend tax dollars. By far, the best approach, the approach that saves tax dollars in the long run, is building a new, efficient to operate the station in a central location. When looking down the road, the cost savings are enormous. And the bottom line is that we can improve emergency services to the community because of that.”
One of the most important advantages of this approach is emergency services will not be disrupted while the new station is being built. The District will continue to operate out of the old stations until the new one is finished. If attempts were made to renovate the two existing stations, there is no way to avoid disruptions in service.
“The emergency services we provide the community are truly lifesaving,” continued Chief Cranmer. “There are senior citizens and other facilities in our community that we visit just about every day. When the alarm goes off, we need to respond quickly, with up-to-date equipment.”
If this bond proposal passes, property taxes on a $100,000 house would increase approximately $0.79 per week.
“This year our District is celebrating its 75th anniversary,” said Ford. “If our community approves this proposal, when we hit our 100th anniversary, we will still have a modern, up-to-date, fully functional, and operationally cost-effective fire station. The station will be built to last at least 50 years. It is a smart investment for our community. And it will enhance our ability to perform our lifesaving work."
More information about this proposal can be found on the District’s website at: