Minutes of the Geary County Rural Fire Board Trustees Meeting

For April 1, 2009


The meeting was called to order at 7:30 p.m. by Chairman Ben Bennett.


Roll call was taken.  Districts present: Jefferson, Blakely, Lyon, Milford, and Smoky Hill.  Districts absent: Jackson and Wingfield.  Also present were Trustee Board Chair Ben Bennett, Fire Chief Garry Berges, Assistant Fire Chief Brian Clark and County Extension Agent Chuck Otte.


Danny Boller moved to approve the minutes as presented.  The motion was seconded and passed 6 – 0.


Fire Chief Berges reported that for 2009 there have been 48 fire runs.  This compares to 25 in the same period in 2008.  There was a total of 129 fire runs in 2008.  Chief Berges attributed the increase in runs to the dry and windy conditions that the region had been experiencing.


The county has submitted a grant request to the Kansas Forest Service for $5,000.  This is a 50:50 matching grant.  The request was for fire beaters, fire rakes, backpack sprayers etc. for grass fires.


Training sessions for fire fighters are still being conducted by Garry and Brian.  There were 23 at the last session including 4 new fire fighters from Humboldt Creek area.  ID cards for volunteer firefighters are being created.  Volunteers are still taking the online fire safety classes that have been made available from the Target Safety Grant.


Brian reported that the restroom in the back bay area has been completely renovated with all new plumbing and fixtures.  They have designed new t-shirts that can be ordered for $11 to $12 each.  Call Jennifer in the Emergency Management office to order.  The shirts are being printed locally at Screen Machine. 


County Extension Agent Otte had no report.


Unfinished Business: Brian and Garry are still preparing the request for proposals for the new fire station at Old Milford Road and K-57.  All the recent fire runs have made it difficult to find time to work on this. There may be federal stimulus money available for this project.


All trucks are currently operational.  One of the volunteers has been doing tune-ups on the truck engines.


New Business:  There was discussion regarding the possibility of having laundry equipment at Emergency Management to wash bunker gear.  Commercial size equipment that would work best for this appeared to be somewhat expensive, but it would be further investigated.


It was asked why fire runs weren’t being listed in the Daily Union.  It was explained that the newspaper decides what to print.  However, it was pointed out that perhaps staff at the newspaper doesn’t know to check with the Emergency Management Office on a regular basis for a listing of fire runs by the rural fire department.


There was discussion about outdoor lighting at the stations.  Staff has been working their way through the stations to determine current operability of outdoor lighting.  Stations 5, 6 & 10 still need to be done.  In some of the stations there is a need for new breaker boxes.


New gravel/rock was needed on the floor of station #6.


Dan Boller moved to adjourn the meeting.  The motion was seconded and passed 6 – 0.  The meeting was adjourned at 7:52 p.m.


Respectfully submitted,

Chuck Otte

Recording Secretary