Lehigh Township (PA) Fire Chief Pushes for Fire Apparatus Replacement Plan

Lehigh Township supervisors need to create a long-term plan for replacing fire trucks before the township’s aging fleet gets too much older, according to the fire company’s chief.

Representatives from the Lehigh Township Fire Company, an all-volunteer organization that serves more than 10,000 residents over 30 square miles, attended a board meeting Tuesday night to pore over financial statements and explain why new trucks will be needed soon.

The fire company raises a lot of its own funds by operating the Country Garden Banquet Hall, leasing out company-owned rental properties and hosting a variety of fundraising events throughout the year.

The fire company hasn’t made a specific monetary request of the township, Hildebrand said after the meeting. Rather, fire officials have been trying to stress the need for drafting an equipment replacement plan.

Supervisors have spoken publicly this year about the possibility of raising taxes in order to fund fire equipment purchases, but no decisions have yet been made. The board is still determining what funding, if any, it will provide and where that money would come from, board Chairman Darryl Snover said after the meeting.

The township’s most recent fire truck purchases date back to 2003 and 1998 and many of the company’s trucks require regular maintenance and repairs, Hildebrand said.

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