Verdigris Residents To Vote On $3 Million Bond For Pair Of New Fire Trucks

People living in the Verdigris Fire Protection District will vote Tuesday on a more than $3 million bond for two new fire trucks.

Monday, June 17th 2024, 9:56 pm

By: Cal Day


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People living in the Verdigris Fire Protection District will vote Tuesday on a more than $3 million bond for two new fire trucks.

The proposal comes less than a year after voters rejected a much larger plan for upgrades.

The Verdigris Fire Chief said the money would go towards replacing both of their engines. He said one of them is more than 20 years old and the other is over 30 years old. He said it's time to make some upgrades to meet the needs of the community.

It feels like a step back in time when opening the doors to one of the Verdigris fire trucks currently in operation.

Chief Mike Shaffer said the recommendation is for some trucks to be replaced every 15 years, but that benchmark passed a long time ago.

"We've been able to stretch ours a whole lot longer, they're just beginning to past that effective life to where maintenance costs and availability of parts is an issue," Chief Shaffer said.

Chief Shaffer is hopeful voters in the Verdigris Fire Protection District will pass the nearly-$3.7 million bond to purchase two new trucks.

He said the equipment is needed to help meet the high demand.

"We're a single station and we are the single busiest fire station in Rogers County that's dispatched by the Rogers County 911 center," Chief Shaffer said.

Voters said NO to a $13.5 million proposition in 2023, which included a new firehouse. That's when Chief Shaffer hit the drawing board.

"The feedback that we got from a lot of our voters was they want to be able to make decisions on each part as we move forward in the future of Verdigris Fire," Chief Shaffer said.

He said the day will come when they ask for a new firehouse, but for now, they're taking it one step at a time.

"That growth will have to happen, we're listening to the voters and the people who live in the community, they're saying give it to us one step at a time," Chief Shaffer said.

Polls open Tuesday from 7 a.m. to 7 p.m.

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