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  1. #1
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    Default Anyone putting off new apparatus due to the economy

    Last year we formed a committee to replace a 21 year old engine. Now we are finally at the point where we have a truck speced out to fit our needs,and the economy has gone to hell. We've justified our reason for a replacement,and we've been told the money is tight,and isn't there. In one way we want to push to get this truck replaced so a ladder can be replaced as soon as a new engine is paid off,but on the other hand the tax payers in our district have enough of a financial burden with todays economy.The other alternative is to wait 3-4 years and go for an engine and an aerial at the same time,and hope the financial sector is doing much better.


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    MembersZone Subscriber npfd801's Avatar
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    We're rushing to try to get one purchased before the end of the year, due to NFPA changes, EPA changes, material costs, etc. Sheer inflation is making putting off the purchase of rigs a losing battle as you'll never earn as much in interest as material costs increase...

    We are very fortunate that we're almost totally property tax funded, so much of the factors that hurt other taxing bodies won't hit us as hard. It doesn't hurt that the 1991 engine we're replacing is starting to cost an arm and a leg to keep running either.
    "Share your knowledge - it's a way to achieve immortality." - Stolen from Chase Sargent's Buddy to Boss program

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    Wink New engine

    Well we have a committee and have looked over several manufactures and we have picked a manufacture we are going to work with. We have most of the money saved up, we still need more and are most likely prepared to finance the rest. We have been instructed to goto bid after 01-01-09 because that is when we will accuratley know what are following year budget will be. I know first of year increase, and new NFPA increases, but the chief wants to make sure we will have a budget to support the payment to finish financing the engine. I guess we are lucky to have almost all the money to buy without a bond or asking public for additional taxes, goto to give credit ti careful budgeting which is not easy. Good luck we are to replacing a 20 year old engine.

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    Forum Member CooterRob's Avatar
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    we're doing just fine for now... our new pumper is all paid for and gets delivered the first week of next month.

    Our new tanker maybe be a different story :-O
    "I don't wanna hear about it... I wanna see results!!!":-P

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    Quote Originally Posted by wconlon53 View Post
    Last year we formed a committee to replace a 21 year old engine. Now we are finally at the point where we have a truck speced out to fit our needs,and the economy has gone to hell. We've justified our reason for a replacement,and we've been told the money is tight,and isn't there. In one way we want to push to get this truck replaced so a ladder can be replaced as soon as a new engine is paid off,but on the other hand the tax payers in our district have enough of a financial burden with todays economy.The other alternative is to wait 3-4 years and go for an engine and an aerial at the same time,and hope the financial sector is doing much better.
    If I were you I would go back to pushing it if the 21 year old engine needs replaced just have a dealer work up a price on the same engine 3 years from now. There is no garantee that the economy is going to be better in 3-4 years it may even get worse, after watching the presidental debate tonight I am not very optomistic that either of the candidates knows how to fix the problem. So you might as well go for it now before the bottom drops out.

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    Forum Member Rescue101's Avatar
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    Here's another thought.As the economy sinks,"business"picks up.So do you want to make increased runs on aging equipment?The price of rigs is going nowhere but up and your tax dollar isn't going to buy any more tomorrow or two years from now. T.C.

  7. #7
    Forum Member Bones42's Avatar
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    Anyone putting off new apparatus due to the economy
    Simply put.....No.
    "This thread is being closed as it is off-topic and not related to the fire industry." - Isn't that what the Off Duty forum was for?

  8. #8
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    We're still replacing some of our ambulances and squads as scheduled, but the county will not pay for a new heavy rescue vehicle in 2009.

    We also cannot get new stations built, old stations renovated (one station has a mold problem, and has shut down one part of the station), or additional staffing added to bring us up to NFPA standards. We are a fire rescue department, meaning fire and EMS are provided by one department. This is probably the ONLY factor has has kept us from seeing the budget and personnel cuts that the City of Atlanta, City of East Point, and Fulton County are seeing next to us. Where their fire departments are only a budget expenditure, we help mitigate some of that cost through EMS billing.

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    Forum Member 1OLDTIMER's Avatar
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    Question new pump:

    Quote Originally Posted by wconlon53 View Post
    Last year we formed a committee to replace a 21 year old engine. Now we are finally at the point where we have a truck speced out to fit our needs, and the economy has gone to hell. We've justified our reason for a replacement, and we've been told the money is tight, and isn't there.
    None of my business (I guess), but if you don't mind me asking...what is your "justified reason for a replacement"? And..."we've been told the money is tight, and isn't there."

    Unfortunately, the later is going to be a norm for years to come...not only at your dept., but for many across the counrty. This is not necessarily your fault, but those who came before you have been conditioned to operating with an unlimited flow of money...many times buying without justification of their NEEDS. With this "historic" mess the country [and as of today the world] is now in, every dime spent MUST be justified...both public and private.

    Note; that I said NEEDS...not wants and wishes.
    "we will bankrupt ourselves in the vain attempt at absolute security"
    Pres. / General Dwight D. Eisenhower

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    If your budget can stand it, now is a great time to buy since apparatus orders are down according to most reports. That makes it a buyers market, and manufactures might be more aggressive in discounting to maintain production.

    If you order before 01/01/09, you save thousands on the 2009 NFPA revisions. Then there is the 2010 emissions standard, which will add another few thousand to the price.

    C6

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    Post local economy & Budget!

    With the property taxes here in New Jersey going up every year and banks not willing to loan large amounts of cash the talk at our department is to look hard at having our old Mack/Baker refurbed & remounted on a new chassis cab, other than going will a brand new Seagrave 75' Aerialscope at a cost of 1.1 million dollars. We will find out in a few weeks at the next board meeting!

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    Quote Originally Posted by 1OLDTIMER View Post
    None of my business (I guess), but if you don't mind me asking...what is your "justified reason for a replacement"? And..."we've been told the money is tight, and isn't there."

    Unfortunately, the later is going to be a norm for years to come...not only at your dept., but for many across the counrty. This is not necessarily your fault, but those who came before you have been conditioned to operating with an unlimited flow of money...many times buying without justification of their NEEDS. With this "historic" mess the country [and as of today the world] is now in, every dime spent MUST be justified...both public and private.

    Note; that I said NEEDS...not wants and wishes.
    NFPA Annex D recommends replacing or refurbishing apparatus built between 1979 to 1991,and we have 2 trucks a 1987 Engine and a 1991 Ladder.The engine has ran out of storage space a few years ago,and is getting close to start nickel and dimming us on repairs. It doesn't hold air pressure to well,and the last 2 years it seems like it's getting harder and harder to pull a draft with it. We generally replace a truck every 20-25 years so replacing a 21 year old engine and paying it off within 5 years,our ladder will be 23-24 years old when it's replaced. I should also add our funding comes from municipal property taxes which has seen a reassessment 2 years ago so the funds should be there,but god knows what they spend it on.

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    We expect delivery of a new engine in January, which is paid for in full already. The next apparatus to be replaced is due in 2015-2017. Hopefully by then the millage will have been upped a bit, but I also anticipate a few career hirings prior to that point, which will also take funds away. It's just a waiting game all around.
    A Fire Chief has ONLY 1 JOB and that's to take care of his fireman. EVERYTHING else falls under this.

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    Forum Member CooterRob's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Rescue101 View Post
    Here's another thought.As the economy sinks,"business"picks up.So do you want to make increased runs on aging equipment?The price of rigs is going nowhere but up and your tax dollar isn't going to buy any more tomorrow or two years from now. T.C.
    Both of my depts. have given that consideration and both have considered bumping up replacement of certain older apparatus to this year.
    "I don't wanna hear about it... I wanna see results!!!":-P

  15. #15
    Forum Member FIREMECH1's Avatar
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    After reading the above posts, I'm thankful for the "timing is everything" rule.

    We ordered 8 engines 12 months ago, and should be delivered in the next week or two. These will replace 8 rigs that are between 22 to 15 years old, and causing me nothing but problems. 5 of them will be reserve rigs, to replace 2 that are 30yrs old, and has no business being anything, but a bridge washer.

    Here's the bad part. A small town that we annexed, still has a functioning rural fire board and we are responsible for fire coverage in that area. They want 3 new engines in that section. They also liked what we have coming in, and wanted to get them spec'd the same. Problem is, for the same exact thing, in a year, the price jumped up $42,000, each. The rural fire board, is now thinking of dropping it down to two.

    We also have 6 EMS rigs, that have over 150,000 miles on them. The city has one budgeted for 2010. That is ridiculous, period.

    With the economy the way it is, we got the pumpers at the right time. But with it, EMS will suffer the brunch of the "do we really need them".

    NOTE: I saw somewhere that either Kansas or Missouri has a mileage limit on patient carrying med units. Can someone please tell me more, or link me to that info. Thanks.

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    Forum Member DeputyChiefGonzo's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Rescue101 View Post
    Here's another thought.As the economy sinks,"business"picks up.So do you want to make increased runs on aging equipment?The price of rigs is going nowhere but up and your tax dollar isn't going to buy any more tomorrow or two years from now. T.C.

    Tim's correct....

    The economic downturn has affected everyone, including apparatus manufacturers and dealerships. You can get "more truck for the buck", and the dealers are willing to haggle more to keep their people employed.
    ‎"The education of a firefighter and the continued education of a firefighter is what makes "real" firefighters. Continuous skill development is the core of progressive firefighting. We learn by doing and doing it again and again, both on the training ground and the fireground."
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    Default Hard times ahead...?

    Y'all are correct, but I haven't seen anyone concerned and/or mention WHERE the money will come from...when the local tax base drops? I recall departments that ran stuff over 40yrs. old; men bringing toilet paper to work from home; rigs with recapped drive tires; and even one station that had the pump backed up on wooden ramps [inside the station], coast out onto the apron, and "pop the clutch" in second gear to get the thing started...all cause the city couldn't afford a battery.

    If it gets that bad again...and it very well could, I doubt if the NFPA/EPA and all the rest of the other "PA" will be employed either...so who cares about regs? Regs is what got us into this mess now...fewer regs is what will get us out!
    "we will bankrupt ourselves in the vain attempt at absolute security"
    Pres. / General Dwight D. Eisenhower

  18. #18
    Forum Member islandfire03's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by 1OLDTIMER View Post
    Y'all are correct, but I haven't seen anyone concerned and/or mention WHERE the money will come from...when the local tax base drops? I recall departments that ran stuff over 40yrs. old; men bringing toilet paper to work from home; !
    You mean thats not normal practice today. Geeze, I missed out on that memo. The economy is in the toilet around here with a major employer [ US Navy base closing] and real estate values dropping below what people owe. The insecurity in the job market, less sales tax revenues than projected and add in high energy cost's to the mix . It's gonna be a rough winter and into the next few years with budget cuts everywhere.

  19. #19
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    Default On the way

    Up here in North Idaho we just had spec's go out for bids on a new Tanker/Pumper. We have the money and our Firefighters just signed a four year contract. So to answer your question...we're ok so far .
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    Jay Dudley
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  20. #20
    Forum Member 1OLDTIMER's Avatar
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    Default Economic MESS!

    Quote Originally Posted by islandfire03 View Post
    You mean thats not normal practice today. Geeze, I missed out on that memo. The economy is in the toilet around here with a major employer [ US Navy base closing] and real estate values dropping below what people owe. The insecurity in the job market, less sales tax revenues than projected and add in high energy cost's to the mix . It's gonna be a rough winter and into the next few years with budget cuts everywhere.
    I believe that many are in denail on this tragic MESS, and they think that the govt. [or someone] will "fix-it." BREAKING NEWS...the govt. has already FIXED IT, that's the problem. This is not a correction in the market...it is near total failure of the whole system. I fear that some paid depts. may have to revert to [at least partial] volunteers to provide protection to the citizens...and make due with what equipment they have now...then well see what the loyalist are made of.

    Up here in North Idaho we just had spec's go out for bids on a new Tanker/Pumper. We have the money and our Firefighters just signed a four year contract. So to answer your question...we're ok so far .
    __________________
    Respectfully,
    Jay Dudley, Fire Commissioner
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    Honorable Commissioner Dudley:

    You are deffinately in a minority position, and I hope your tax base holds up to pay the new 4-year contract of the firemen. Many [other] cities are hand-wringing just meet their present obligations...not considering any future expendures whatsoever.

    The very best to your department.
    Last edited by 1OLDTIMER; 10-09-2008 at 02:20 PM.
    "we will bankrupt ourselves in the vain attempt at absolute security"
    Pres. / General Dwight D. Eisenhower

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