There’s no way to put a price on public safety, but with an aging fire truck in its arsenal, the Williamston Fire Department
was concerned about how to afford a much-needed replacement. After years of grant writing and re-writing, the volunteer department is now celebrating at $750,000 Federal Emergency Management Agency’s (FEMA) Assistance to Firefighters Grant (AFG) that will pay for 95 percent of a new truck.
“You can’t ask for a small community like ours to pay for a new truck” says Williamston
Fire Chief, Bill Siegel. “When you get a grant for quarter of a million, it’s really nice. Without the grant, we couldn’t afford this.”
The Northeast Ingham Emergency Service Authority Williamston Fire had applied for a FEMA AFG grant once and was denied. But the hard-working volunteers didn’t give up. They met with FEMA representatives to help redraft the grant and reapplied. The winning grant was written by Rick and Reggie Shuck, local residents and volunteers with the Williamston Fire Department.
“And lo and behold, we got it,” says Siegel.
Specifications for the new truck are now being researched, and Siegel believes it will be another years before the bid process is complete, the truck is built and then delivered. The new truck will have a 100-foot ladder and will replace a 1991 truck with a 63 foot ladder.