Petition Seeks Open Meeting on Barnstable Fire District Consolidation

Ron Beaty of West Barnstable, a self-described Tea Party Activist who led an effort last spring for Cape towns to withdraw from the Cape Cod Commission, won the Republican primary and will face State Senator Dan Wolf in the general election.

Ron Beaty of West Barnstable

BARNSTABLE – A petition has been started for the town of Barnstable to have an “Open Meeting of the Voters” to discuss the possibility of consolidating the town’s fire districts.

Barnstable resident and candidate for County Commissioner Ron Beaty is organizing the effort to have the town wide discussion.

Beaty hopes to bring together the voters, town council and fire district officials.

“How exactly that would impact the readiness and services to the different communities nobody really knows for sure,” Beaty said. “But we will know once everyone sits down and comes up with concrete facts and figures.”

Beaty said the five districts spend about $37 million each year combined.

“There’s been a lot of talk that if they combined they would save $22 million to $25 million a year by consolidating,” he said. “How accurate those figures are I don’t know.”

Beaty said gathering facts about the benefits and disadvantages of consolidation is needed.

“If it turns out that the advantages far outweigh the disadvantages then they should move forward with it,” he said.

The “Open Meeting of the Voters” is within section 8-9 of the town charter. The petition requires at least 300 signatures.

Discussions about the consolidation of the fire districts goes back to the appointment of a special task force on the issue in 1936.

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  1. This is a community issue and conversation that is long past due and needs to take place.

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