Crosby wins Quality of Life
Finishes among the top 15 finalists for title
By LYDIA GRIMES Lifestyles reporter
Although education drew most of the attention during the debate over Amendment One, the state's volunteer fire departments stand to be among the groups hardest hit by buget cuts.
While some agencies will not see their funding reduced very much, and others are actually being increased, there is one area that is taking a tremendous cut and it is one that affects everyone who lives in rural areas of the state. If passed in the budget that Gov. Bob Riley proposed, the reduction of funds to rural fire departments may cause some drastic changes to the present system.
That will make a lot of difference of each of the 20 volunteer fire departments in Escambia County. Joey Moffett, President of the Escambia County Alabama Volunteer Fire Fighter's Association, says that they are preparing for some leaner times.
Even though the departments operate with volunteers, there is still a great need for money to pay for insurance, training, maintaining equipment and other bills such as utilities.
It's not easy or inexpensive to respond to automobile accidents, medical emergencies, brush fires, structure fires and respond to the other calls that come in from the community. The cost to outfit a firefighter from head-to-toe, including a breathing apparatus is about $4,600 ($3,400 for breathing apparatus and $1,100 for fire suit).