Tax proposed for new fire truck

The Grand Haven Township Fire/Rescue Department is replacing its "first-out' fire engine and is seeking the support from township residents.
Kyle Moroney
Mar 28, 2012


The Township Board on Monday debated about replacing its main fire engine with a more expensive, but more efficient quint-type fire truck — or continue with a traditional engine.

“You have to decide what’s the best type of apparatus to serve the township from now and into the future,” Township Manager Bill Cargo said.

After much discussion, board members unanimously voted on going with the quint at the cost of $725,000. The board also decided to designate $400,000 in the township’s general fund for the truck.

The board discussed creating a townshipwide special assessment district or having a special millage request to cover the remaining $325,000. On Monday, board members said they would rather see the request on a ballot.

There are two millage options that the board will be considering: a one-year, 0.62 mill that would cost taxpayers with a $100,000 home $31; or a two-year, 0.31 mill that would cost taxpayers $15.50 each year.

The millage request is expected to be on the Aug. 7 ballot.

“For something that’s going to last 30 years, it’s going to be pretty minimal,” Fire Chief Tom Gerencer said, explaining that the Fire Department Fund has a $150,000 fund balance and “just keeps us afloat.”

The quint-type fire truck is a 75-footer that has a pump, water tank, fire hose, aerial device and ground ladders, according to Gerencer. Its apparatus is more agile and less expensive than a traditional aerial platform truck, and it will allow for less staff needed on the truck.If the millage is approved in August, township officials said they expect to put it out for bid immediately and hope to order it by November. If the ballot issue fails, then it could be put on the ballot again in November.

To read more of this story, see today’s print or e-edition of the Grand Haven Tribune.




So now that the twp tax payers renewed the fire mileage not long ago... now they are going to be ask for support to approve a upcoming mileage to support the purchase of a new fire truck. We no that equipment needs be replaced from time to time and for insurance reasons, but since when does the twp need to replace the present first line truck. Is the twp going to trade in a older truck??? or just increase the number of trucks to support GH City fire service. I thought the local fire departments in the area had a mutual agreement package. if so why would we purchase a truck which is available to the twp 1/12/ miles from the twp lines. I thought Gov Synder was requesting local governments to try and stop duplicating public services. Maybe the twp should look at other means of financing this huge cost, like writing a grant under homeland security... they seem to have written a couple of these on pet projects and for more wasteful spending... or maybe discontinue the Advance Life Support Service which is really costing more money then originally told... We do have an Advance life support Service just 6 blocks from the twp limits.. This is a duplication of services and more wasteful spending..... and I believe having Auto Electronic Defib's are the real life saver... People read into this... "If the ballot issue fails, then it could be put on the ballot again in November". More wasteful spending... I think the twp has the cash to fund the total project... if not... then the twp should of asked for a increase in the fire mileage... which they knew was going to be attacked... maybe they should wait one more year and save the money to fund this project totally... like most cities and twp do... People do you realize if they put a special assessment on your taxes you can not deduct it off your state taxes... I wonder how long this special police assessment will continue after the tax payers voted down to pay for additional police service once. Maybe we need to look at cutting some full-time staff or make the chief's position part-time to pay for the toys...


The question is simple...Does Grand Haven Twp. F.D. really need a new 700,000 fire truck? If you have had a chance to view their current fire trucks you will find them in excellent condition, cosmetically and mechanically. Tax payers need to understand some things before they pay $325,000. First of all, how many significant fires does GHTFD run per year? Don't get me wrong, they are a wonderful service, but we are talking necessity here. It's no secret our economy is hurting. It's not like we live in Denver or Chcago with call volumes of 50-70,000 calls per year. We are talking about 600 calls/yr (+ or - ) with 90+ % of those calls being medical emergencies as apposed to fires. A $150,000 balance in their fund is relative, isn't it ? Many people, especially those that are unemployed would consider that sum as a great deal of money. I would encourage Mr. Cargo and the GHTFD to scrutinize their fiscal responsibilities more carefully.


I support the other opinions on this topic. GHT Trusttee's seem to relish spending local resident's money,very little is their's .


We have to get this truck!! Come on people, pay up! This thing could be the difference between life and death!!


In cities of the United States, firefighters are generally deployed into fire companies specializing in certain tasks. Most common are engine companies and ladder, or "truck", companies. In addition, large cities frequently staff rescue companies. -Steven C. Wyer


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