Jay accepts grant for pagers, gloves, foam for fire department

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Jan. 11—JAY — The Select Board voted unanimously Monday to accept a $1,705.38 grant to pay half the cost of pagers, gloves and firefighting foam for the Fire Rescue Department.

Fire Rescue Chief Mike Booker applied for the grant from the State of Maine Volunteer Fire Assistance program. In all, the town will purchase four pagers, 35 sets of gloves and foam.

Board Chairman Terry Bergeron praised Booker for his efforts in securing the grant.

The board also voted to enter an agreement with Greenwood Emergency Vehicles to loan a fire engine while the town's ladder truck is being refurbished at the Brunswick company. Its main office is in Massachusetts, Booker said.

The town would be responsible for fuel and to insure it for $25,000. The loaner would be used between three and four months, he said.

The board voted in August to have the 1997 ladder truck refurbished for an estimated $205,000, including repainting it. The work is expected to extend the life of the truck for 10 to 15 years, according to Booker. The money will come from the department's capital reserve account, which had $375,000 in August.

In other business, Town Manager Shiloh LaFreniere told the board Franklin County will participate in the Maine Statewide Orthoimagery Program to create specialized, aerial digital photos of the county.

Commissioners voted Jan. 4 to use $40,382 from its American Rescue Plan Act allotment for the 18-inch high-resolution photos. The state will pay the remaining $80,740. A flyover is expected this spring.

The town budgeted last year to digitize its maps, LaFreniere told the board. Officials wanted to wait to see if the county would participate in the program. Since the county is participating in the program, towns can buy higher-resolution images at a significant savings. The town is looking at 6-inch photos, she said.

Bergeron announced a budget workshop with selectpersons, the Budget Committee and department heads will be held at 5 p.m. Jan. 18 in the Spruce Mountain Elementary School gym. The budget books are available at the Town Office.

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