Wentzville Fire proposes building new firehouses under PLA

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WENTZVILLE FIRE PROTECTION District is seeking voter approval of two proposals on the Aug. 5 ballot to build and staff new firehouses to reduce response times in the district. – St. Louis Post-Dispatch photo
WENTZVILLE FIRE PROTECTION District is seeking voter approval of two proposals on the Aug. 5 ballot to build and staff new firehouses to reduce response times in the district.
– St. Louis Post-Dispatch photo

Propositions L & F on ballot Aug. 5

St. Charles County – The Wentzville Fire Protection District is asking the community to support Propositions LiFe (Propositions L & F on the ballot) to replace two outdated fire stations and build two new stations to reduce response times and meet the district’s growing needs.

Wentzville is one of the fastest growing fire protection districts in the state, covering 88-square-miles in western St. Charles County.

Wentzville Captain Dave Marlo, secretary/treasurer of the Professional Firefighters of Eastern Missouri Local 2665, said the district needs to rebuild two existing stations and build two additional stations to reduce response times, which can run as high as 10-14 minutes in some parts of the district.

“Both these propositions have to pass,” Marlo said. “Our response times are just frankly unacceptable.”

Wentzville has an ordinance in place requiring the work to be done under a project labor agreement.

Marlo said the building projects are expected to take about $20 million to complete.

“We have a very labor friendly board and a very labor friendly chief,” Marlo said.

He added that the district also needs to hire more fire fighters and purchase new equipment.

ENDORSED BY BUILDING TRADES

Jeff Aboussie, executive secretary-treasurer of the St. Louis Building & Construction Trades Council has endorsed the two measures for their life-saving potential and the jobs they will create.

“The enhancements called for in these propositions will lead to faster response times and better outcomes for victims of a fire or vehicle accident, or someone in the middle of a life-threatening medical emergency,” Aboussie said.

“Additionally, passage of these propositions will create new construction jobs and bring work for our labor force.”

THE PROPOSITIONS

Proposition L (Life) is a 25 cent tax increase to fund the hiring of a training officer and additional paramedic-trained fire fighters to staff two additional fire stations to provide enhanced life-saving service to the community. The measure requires a simple majority to pass.

Proposition F (Family) is a $30 million bond issue to allow the district to:

• Build two new fire stations;

• Rebuild two existing fire stations;

• Purchase advanced life support medical equipment for every fire truck; and

• Purchase new fire trucks to replace aging equipment.

The bond issue requires a 4/7ths majority to pass.

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