By Tia Lynn Ivey
The Madison Mayor and City Council approved the purchase of an upgraded fire truck with a three-story reaching ladder in early May. They were convinced that the tree-story ladder would improve because of its three-story-reaching ladder firefighters’ capabilities to extinguish fires occurring in taller buildings.
“There is no doubt this will enhance our city’s safety,” said Madison Mayor Fred Perriman.
“I am proud that we could made this happen,” said Councilman Joe DiLetto. “We handled this like a business decision, and not a government decision. I think this council should be doing more of that, if we put our minds to it and really focus on an issue, we can make more decision like this.”
City officials tinkered with the new fire truck last week when it arrived from Florida.
After sending out eight invitation bids to local financing agencies, the city settled on BB&T Government Financing through the Georgia Municipal Association, which offered the lowest interest rate at 2.23 percent on a five-year loan. The agency required an upfront $25,000 down payment. Both the down payment and loan payments will come out of the city’s general fund over the next five years. The cost of the vehicle is $300,000.
“We got a better deal than we originally anticipated,” said City Manager David Nunn, who noted the original cost of the fire truck was listed at $325,000.
“I want to thank the fire department,” said Nunn. “They are always very patient with budget considerations…they are always cognizant of the fact that the money is not always there. But this is something important for the safety of the city. It’s a big step for us.”