Hamilton (MA) Approves Fire Apparatus Purchase

Hamilton will purchase a new fire engine after a vote at the Oct. 20 town meeting.

Voters approved all articles on the warrant; the vote to purchase the new quint fire truck was unanimous.

A two-thirds vote was required on Article 2-5 to purchase the truck because it involves incurring debt. The total cost is $940,000, and the quint will replace the town’s current ladder truck, which failed inspection due to extensive corrosion, and the fire department’s oldest pumper truck, which is due to be replaced soon.

Finance and Advisory Committee member Charles Chivakos explained that, in addition to the $100,000 offset of the cost from the town’s free cash, which was part of Article 2-5, the expected $10,000 resale value of the pumper truck that the quint is also replacing will help offset the cost.

The purchase will be funded with bonds financed for 12 years, while the truck should last 25 years. Chivakos estimated a $24.06 yearly tax increase on a median home value of $390,600. He said that would likely be less than the cost of higher fire insurance that homeowners would experience if the town did not replace the ladder truck.

Chivakos said the town had researched buying used quints, but he said the market on used quints is essentially non-existent, other than a few 20-year old trucks near the end of their life cycle.

One resident asked whether a 20-year old quint would not be usable. Hamilton Fire Chief Phil Stevens said it would depend on whether they could find a usable used quint.

For more informaiton, view hamilton.wickedlocal.com

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