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Equipment & Gear Outdated

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  • Equipment & Gear Outdated

    LARAMIE, Wyo. (AP) - Volunteer fire stations in Albany County
    complain that they have outdated equipment and hardly any funding.
    Firefighters blame the Albany County Fire District.
    "They're not providing any support whatsoever to any of the
    rural fire departments. We could use, if nothing else, some
    financial support," said Jeff Mitros, head of the Vedauwoo Fire
    Vedauwoo is the district's newest station. The station has a
    fire truck that dates to 1951.
    "I've got guys in my department wearing fire protective suits
    that are 15 or 20 years old," said Dan Williams, head of Big
    Laramie Valley Fire Department.
    The stations have acquired much of their equipment from other
    Firefighters say the district would not have funding problems if
    it applied for 3 mills in annual tax revenue, as it is legally
    entitled, and not just 1 mill.
    Tim Sullivan, the elected official to the fire board, said the
    Big Laramie and Centennial Valley fire departments decided to form
    their own fire zones, making them ineligible for governmental
    "They're not really part of the government," he said.
    "They're just kind of a volunteer ... it's kind of like they could
    be a Moose Club. That's about their legal status."
    He said the fire board does not have a legal mechanism to
    transfer funds to the rural departments.
    "Until we get the bylaws advertised and approved, we're kind of
    stuck," he said. "We provide money for training - We're more than
    happy to do that. But as far as operating expenses and buying
    equipment, legally we can't do it at this point."

    (Copyright 2003 by The Associated Press. All Rights Reserved.)
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