On Tuesday, March 5, voters in Barre City will be headed to the polls to weigh in on many items including the annual general fund budget. This budget could affect the Barre City Fire Department and emergency services provided to city residents.

For 114 years, since 1905, Barre City Fire Department has served the community with full-time firefighters. We are two departments in one, a fire department and an ambulance service. All of our full-time Firefighters are cross-trained to a minimum of advanced-EMT, with six trained as paramedics. We respond to nearly 2,500 medical and fire related incidents each year.

We are comprised of 16 shift worker positions. There are four shifts of four firefighters working 24-hour tours. We have had a frozen firefighter position since the restructuring of the city’s emergency services that separated the fire and police department last year. This has left one of our shifts with only three firefighters assigned to it instead of four.

Supporting this year’s general budget will again fund our 16th firefighter/AEMT position and restore all four shifts to full strength. This is not a new position, just appropriating funding to fill the existing position.

The Barre City Firefighters IAFF L881 would like to thank the community of Barre City for over a century of continued support. We strive every day to provide professional, compassionate and community focused public service to our residents.

Zachary Tillinghast is president of Barre City Firefighters IAFF Local 881.

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