Governing bodies of M-ville Fire District to vote on bond issue
By Karen Caffarini Post-Tribune correspondent April 28, 2013 10:02PM
Updated: May 30, 2013 2:14PM
MERRILLVILLE — The three governing bodies overseeing the Merrillville Fire Protection Territory District will be conducting consecutive meetings on May 14 to vote on the issuance of up to $3.3 million in bonds for new fire trucks, equipment and gear.
The Merrillville Town Council, Ross Township Board and Merrillville Fire Protection Territory Board will meet at the Merrillville Town Hall, 7820 Broadway.
The first meeting will take place at 5 p.m.
William Touchette, attorney for the Ross Township and fire protection territory boards, said the territory is looking to purchase three pumper fire trucks and one pumper tanker fire truck, new self-contained breathing apparatus for all firefighters and new fire safety suits for all firefighters.
He said the bonds will be paid from money generated through the special fire territory district tax levy fund for equipment replacement.
“We’re already collecting money for this. We planned for these purchases from Day One in order to replace 20- to 25-year-old equipment,” Ross Township Trustee Joseph Shudick said.
Shudick said the pumper tanker will be for the Ainsworth-Deep River area, which is largely unincorporated with few hydrants.
“This gives us a water source,” Shudick said.
Shudick said the new high-tech breathing apparatus will include a visual display that lets firefighters know when they’re short of air.
“We’re just catching up with what hasn’t been done here due to a lack of funds,” Shudick said.
Touchette said once the three boards agree to issue the bonds, the fire territory will go out for bids.
He said the process will take 90 days or longer.
Renovation of Fire Station 1 on 73rd Avenue was recently completed at a cost of $369,800 to accommodate the town’s first full-time firefighters.
The two-story station has an upstairs living quarters and main floor station.