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Albemarle Fire and Rescue Seeks Money for Volunteer Stations

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Albemarle County Deputy Fire Chief John Oprandy. Albemarle County Deputy Fire Chief John Oprandy.
Members of Albemarle Board of Supervisors listen to the proposal. Members of Albemarle Board of Supervisors listen to the proposal.
Board member Ned Galloway speaks at Wednesday's meeting. Board member Ned Galloway speaks at Wednesday's meeting.
ALBEMARLE COUNTY, Va. (WVIR) -

A difference of opinion is causing some issues in Albemarle County Fire and Rescue’s proposal of more financial support for improvement at volunteer stations. 

The Board of Supervisors was supposed to work through Fire and Rescue’s proposed capital funding today, but wants them to rethink proposed changes before updating any funding policies.

The proposed capital funding plan requested Albemarle County Board of Supervisors to give $3 million to help over the next five years. The money would go towards long-term improvements to all the county’s volunteer fire stations.

 Albemarle County Fire and Rescue says dozens of capital projects, such as roofing and parking lots, should be fixed at several stations.

“An example of a larger capital project may be completely replacing an HVAC system, or a roof,” said deputy fire chief John Oprandy. “Something that has a significant cost but longer lifespan.”

However, not all of the county fire stations were in support of the funding plan. Because of this, the board said it did not want to vote until the issues could be resolved.

“You’re asking us to sign onto something where as I look at it from this document, there is not unanimity out there in volunteer professional fire and rescue company land that people support this,” said Rick Randolph of the Albemarle Board of Supervisors.

Fire and Rescue was hopeful the budget would be received well by the board on Wednesday, but the request was met with little support. Supervisors say concerns should be solved before discussing funding.

“We’re trying to be helpful in providing more funds for them to do things and there’s got to be a way to work through those concerns,” said Board of Supervisors member Ned Galloway.

Fire department volunteers and employees sent in questions ahead of the presentation on Wednesday. Many of the questions revolved around trust and control on the money being spent.

The board will hear a new pitch from Albemarle County Fire and Rescue in September.