Falmouth Selectmen to Hold Fire Station Forum

 

FALMOUTH – Falmouth selectmen will host a community forum next week regarding the future of the Falmouth Fire Department.

The forum at Falmouth High School will focus on issues surrounding the department such as where the new fire station might be located and new staffing that is set to come into place in July.

“We really wanted to kick off this process with a community forum to hear from folks, to share some information, it’s really a complex issue,” said Selectman Chair Megan English-Braga.  

“This is going to be a community wide conversation, certainly the building of a new fire station is a community undertaking and so we want to make sure we have a really strong start to this ongoing discussion.”

Selectmen attempted to put together a citizens advisory committee to review and discuss the issues with the fire department, but currently only five people have applied to serve on the committee.

Braga said that the board will continue to advertise for the committee and that they are looking for at least four more people to become members.

Selectmen Susan Moran said it’s important for those on the committee to come from all across Falmouth.

A major issue the town continues to face is push back against the closing of the West Falmouth fire station as many locals continue to advocate to keep it open.

The station is set to be closed on July 1st.

Retired firefighter/paramedic Alden Cook applied for the advisory committee and said that closing the West Falmouth station could potentially double EMS response times and that having no relocation plan in place is dangerous and risky.

“Closing West Falmouth without a relocation plan or combining North and West Falmouth stations at a mutually advantageous site is dangerous and risks the safety of human live in these communities,” Cook said.

Cook added that the committee should consider applying for a Staffing for Adequate Fire & Emergency Response grant from the Federal Emergency Management Agency.

According to Cook, many cities and towns across America are using this method to increase manpower, including municipalities on Cape Cod.

Another applicant for the citizens advisory committee, Marc Finneran of Teaticket, disagreed with Cook’s assertions saying that reducing the number of stations will not increase the response time of EMS services, calling the idea totally preposterous.  

In addition to Cook and Finneran, Ronald Klattenberg, Dan Mahoney, and Patricia Johnson have applied to serve on the advisory committee.

Applications for the citizens advisory committee are available at the office of the Board of Selectmen at Falmouth Town Hall or online at Falmouthmass.us.

The application deadline is 4:30 p.m. on Friday, January 17th.

The community forum is set to take place on Tuesday, January 21st at 7 p.m. at Falmouth High School.

About Luke Leitner

Luke Leitner grew up in Watertown Massachusetts and now lives in West Yarmouth on the Cape. He has been a part of the news team in the CapeCod.com News Center since the spring of 2019. He studied business communications at Western New England University.



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