$40 Million Plan for Modern Fire Service
UPDATED WITH LINKS TO THE FULL CONSULTANT'S REPORT.
Cumberland Municipal Council received a much anticipated consultant’s report today, one that will have far reaching implications for the county’s sixteen fire departments.
The more than one thousand page report contains over 200 recommendations to improve consistency and safety in firefighting across the county.
The report calls for forty million dollars over twenty years to replace six fire stations, a number of out-dated trucks, and specialty equipment.
Mayor Murray Scott says, “We are grateful for the hard work, dedication, and commitment of over 300 volunteer firefighters who help keep our residents safe.”
The county took over responsibility for the fire service in 2005, but in actual practice, the 16 departments are still individually registered as societies in Nova Scotia.
Long standing agreements provide for sharing and inter-departmental cooperation, but the report says the mutual aid system needs to be formalised with written agreements, which would also include the towns of Amherst and Oxford, along with the Five Islands Fire Brigade in Colchester County.
Council accepted the report today and it was immediately shared with each of the fire departments. It will also be available to the public on the county’s website, but at the time of writing this article, it was not yet available.
Council directed staff to review the recommendations, consider any alternatives, and present an implementation plan to council by the end of July.
Goudreault Associates, an emergency services consulting firm based in Moncton, completed the review.
See the report, in four parts, at https://www.cumberlandcounty.ns.ca/council-has-accepted-a-fire-services-review-report.html.
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