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Proposed Building Improvement Bond

Friday, November 14, 2014

John Cannon, Chairman of the Board of Fire Commissioners
Dear District Residents,

On Tuesday, December 9th you will be asked to vote on a "Building Improvement Bond". Whenever the fire district asks the taxpayers to fund a project, you should know why the project is necessary. As the Chairman of the Board of Fire Commissioners, I want your support for this initiative, so let me explain what we need to do.

The funding from the bond will be used for two major projects; both concern improvements to the Halesite fire house. The first has to do with asbestos abatement. When the building was constructed in 1964 it was a state-of-the-art facility, but at that time, asbestos was a common material used in many aspects of the project. Today, we all know that asbestos is a carcinogenic building material that, once disturbed, must, by law, be properly removed. The building improvements proposed for the Halesite fire house would require the removal of this dangerous material.

The second aspect of the proposed bond issue concerns renovating the second floor kitchen, replacing the fifty-year old appliances, bringing the ventilation system up to today's building code requirements, renovation of the office space, and repaving the parking area. All of these repairs are long overdue.

After the first round of bids were submitted, we realized the cost of the renovations, (approximately $500,000) would stress our Capital Reserve Fund. Our outside counsel suggested a modest bond issue would be a better course. This idea is appealing for two reasons: 1. It gives the taxpayer an opportunity to vote directly on the project, and 2. It allows us to do all the work at once; an approach that is far more economical than doing it piecemeal.

I am confident that, after these improvements are completed, our facility will be safer, more efficient, and better able to serve our community. Still, we are asking for your support on this initiative by voting for the proposed bond issue on December 9th.

If you have any questions, I'd be happy to discuss them with you at the public forum we have scheduled for Tuesday, November 18th at 7:00 P.M. at the Halesite fire house.

John Cannon
Chairman, Board of Fire Commissioners




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