CAMPTON-THORNTON FIRE DEPARTMENT
FIRE COMMISSIONER’S MEETING MINUTES
JULY 30, 2012
Fire Commissioners present: Kelly Bolger, Jim Demeritt, Niles Downing, B.G. King
Also present: Chief David Tobine, Deputy Chief Ian Halm
Meeting called to order 4:00 PM.
Chief wanted to bring Fire Commissioner’s up-to-date before meeting the Selectmen in Thornton regarding the Capital Improvement Projects for Town of Thornton. Also, Chief Tobine met with the CIP Committee two weeks ago and needs to have items prepared for their next meeting. The Capital Improvement plan is going out 10 years on their plan.
Chief Tobine believes Engine 2 (’99 Freightliner) should be replaced in 2020. It was supposed to be on a twenty year replacement and when Mitch did the CIP plan, it was changed to a 22 year plan for engine replacement.
Jim Demeritt believes we are spending too much on maintenance and a cost analysis should be done. Chief Tobine thinks $20,000 for a fleet of 11 vehicles isn’t bad.
Chief Tobine thinks 20 years is long enough for a fire apparatus. The problem is technology changes so rapidly we can’t keep up with that. Chief fears we will lose rotation if Campton doesn’t catch up with a CIP like Thornton. Campton Fire Commissioners could meet with the Campton Select Board and Chief Tobine to discuss this.
We only have one lease purchase left on the newest engine. Thornton does have their CIP and they have the cash available. Campton doesn’t have money available.
The original plan was for 10 years when we bought it. We are now past year 5 with no exact plan for replacement. If we had a second ambulance that could be the front line and this one could be a back up. We could then get another five years out of it. The rig can only do so many runs before you start to have mechanical problems when you have to start using mutual aid more. Niles commented that he thought we had a certain percentage of ambulance income being put aside. Chief Tobine said that all ambulance income is going back to the general fund; there is no money being put aside. We are at a catch 22 with this. We can’t wait until 10 years are up to think about it.
It is a 2003 and was purchased used 4 years ago. We are estimating that mechanically it may have 2 years left. Currently there are no plans to replace it. Chief thinks it should be replaced with a crew cab to carry personnel. Chief estimates $30,000 plus for a ¾ ton. This is used to haul equipment, trailers, hose and personnel back and forth to the scene.
Jim Demeritt inquired what was coming up on CIP:
CIP items – (40% – Thornton’s Share)
2012 $12,064 defibrillator
2013 $11,390 air bottles
2013 $12,480 defibrillator
2014 $11,783 air bottles
2014 $12,896 thermal imaging camera
2015 $163,849 replace Engine 5
2016 $26,400 command vehicle
2017 $200,000 Fire Station
2020 $82,000 Engine 2 (check figure – should be $182,000)
Ian questioned if $82,000 was going to be enough money on CIP for Engine 2. That figure should be $182,000.
Jim suggested going to Campton Selectmen and comparing what their plan is. If Campton doesn’t have the money for a certain year then the Thornton CIP would have to be adjusted by moving the money to a different year or a different item. Include justification when making changes to CIP. Chief’s main objectives are to move an engine up one year to 2020, add in utility vehicle within next couple of years and discuss ambulance.
B.G. King inquired about the substation. Kelly thought perhaps a tour of each facility would be a good idea at some point for FC’s. Jim would like to meet with Chief Tobine at Thornton FD for a water sample on Tuesday.
Chief inquired about asking for a utility truck. Jim said Thornton buys into capital reserve and they are really receptive to this program. Jim suggested to trade off on CIP and move things around. That is the reality of the whole plan.
The bottom line is the payback was quick for the ambulance. Also, ambulance revenue is not always as it seems. The government changes rates on Medicare and Medicaid quite a bit. There is a significant elderly population in town. Kelly mentioned that having two elderly housing facilities in Town can become a burden on services such as Fire and Police Departments.
Projects are coming into both towns such as a 250 unit campground in Thornton and a 400 unit hotel for Campton. We would have to determine what the impact would be for the Fire Department. Kelly mentioned applications for traffic study has been turned in for Campton.
Discussion followed about adding a Rescue truck to CIP for 2022. Chief Tobine will discuss on Monday with the Campton Board of Selectmen and Wednesday with the Thornton Board of Selectmen.
The Department has applied for an ambulance under FEMA grant and a separate grant for replacing air packs (approx. $6,000/per unit) which includes spare bottles. Every year these grants are becoming more competitive. If approved, it would eliminate something off the CIP.
Kelly has arranged for the Campton Fire Commissioners to be on the agenda for August 6th at 7:15 at the Campton Selectmen’s meeting.
Motion made to adjourn made by Kelly, seconded by Jim. Voted – all in favor.Meeting adjourned at 5:05 PM.