Block Island Times

Town Council, Fire Department seek ways to fund projects

The Block Island Volunteer Fire and Rescue Department, seeking financial assistance on a fire engine refit and upgrades to the aging Fire Barn, recently reached out to the Town Council to see if there were any funds available to do those projects.
In the end, the Council and officers from the Fire Department agreed on a kind of compromise. If the Fire Department uses donations to pay for the engine upgrade, the Council said it would support going to the town voters to approve a bond that would reimburse the department.
Council members also said they will put forward a motion at the Financial Town Meeting on Monday that would allow the use of $75,000 from the town’s infrastructure fund to pay for the capital expenses of shoring up the Fire Barn and paying for an engineering plan for a new building on the property.
Block Island Volunteer Fire Department Chief Kirk Littlefield, who called in to the virtual meeting from the Fire Barn, said the department needed about $200,000 for an upgrade to Engine 2. Capital improvement projects throughout the town have been defunded in this year’s budget.
“What is the timeline on this,” asked Councilor Martha

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