Letter: Regionalized fire coverage is key

To the Editor:

It is no secret that our Wilton  town stewards in the past looked for ways to increase our taxes via unnecessary scare tactics for inane building projects.

At this week's Board of Selectmen’s (BOS) meeting the fire commission outlined three cost alternatives  following commission chairman Rich McCarty's February recommendation: "The existing Fire Station 2 building and systems are at the end of their useful life and if the condition of the facility is not addressed at this point it could result in a catastrophic failure of the building systems, necessitating a shutdown of the building and a reduction in fire and emergency services coverage for a significant area of Wilton."

Apparently, we keep recycling alarming tactics as a way to increase taxes instead of researching  sound economic alternatives..

On August 4, 2015  "Former Selectman" wrote online following a BOS meeting three years ago: "The comments made at the Board Of Selectman’s meeting have several misstatements. Although the building is 58 years old, the complete septic system was replaced in the mid to late 1980s. Since only 2 people use it, the system should still be in good shape. About the same time, the HVAC system was replaced. The old system circulated air in both the garage and living quarters. The new installed system had a HVAC system for each. A few years later, the front equipment doors were replaced because ‘the old ones were deteriorated’ and were replaced with insulated doors. Supposedly, the equipment (Water Tank Truck) does not fit. SO, put the smaller water tank truck in Station 2. ‘Fire alarms and smoke alarms need evaluating?’ Not even worthy of a comment!

“The fact of the matter is that station 2 is an anomaly. We need regional fire support instead of each town providing its own fire coverage. Wilton already has this with the Georgetown Fire Department. The area served by station 2 could be handled by Ridgefield, for example. Many of the surrounding towns cover for Wilton or even help at Wilton fire responses. Regional fire coverage would just change the response characteristics of primary and secondary responders. One million dollars (and we know it will be more) is just a waste of our money!"

The story remains the same. Instead of unnerving the people of North Wilton, try to be more endeavored in working with other towns for overlapping coverage of which we already do. If you need to raise the garage doors do so. Don't tell Wilton citizens that the building will fall down at any time and it's a ominous emergency. Thankfully, the BOS has put this under further scrutiny because of declining population and cost justification.  Hopefully they will see that regionalization with other towns is essential.
Kevin Hickey
Wilton, Aug. 24