NORTH SMITHFIELD – After three years of requesting funding from the Town Council as part of the capital budget – and being denied – it seems North Smithfield Fire & Rescue Service Chief David Chartier will finally get the emergency equipment he’s been seeking.
The department has been approved for a $121,571 Rhode Island Emergency Management Agency Hazard Mitigation Grant for the purchase of two new generators for the town’s two fire stations on Providence and St. Paul Streets.
Chartier noted the department submitted the grant application late last winter.
“Thankfully enough, we received the grant,” he told councilors this week.
A bid posted for the project brought out two vendors in early December, and the council unanimously approved payment this week to the recommended contractor, United Electric of Manville, for $110,782. Finance Director Antony St. Onge also recommended the expenditure, noting 90 percent will be reimbursed to the town.
Chartier explained that the grant also included $5,000 for a load analysis required by the Federal Emergency Management Agency.
The chief noted that he had requested the emergency generators as part of his department’s capital budget for the past three years. The new equipment will replace outdated generators, which Chartier had warned could likely not be repaired if they failed as maintenance would be unable to get parts. Last year, he told councilors that if the generator malfunctioned at Station 1 where the dispatcher is, the department would not be able to answer calls, or even open the doors to get trucks out.
“Congratulations,” said Town Councilor Paulette Hamilton of the positive news. “Nice way to start the new year.”