Overton County will look to add more service vehicles to its volunteer fire departments with the next round of Community Development Block Grants.
County Executive Ben Danner said if the county is awarded the grant, 12 new mini pumper trucks could be on the way.
“We got a lot of fire departments that are struggling right now,” Danner said. “They are not able to have fund raisers because of COVID, and basically, all the money they got goes towards fuel, and they are not able to maintain and fix the trucks they got.”
Danner said the volunteer fire department currently has 4 pumper trucks all over 25 years old. Danner said the mini pumpers allow the firefighters to reach smaller fires quicker without having to use the full size fire engines.
“These mini pumper trucks are easier to get out of the bay and quicker to get to the scene then the big trucks are,” Danner said. “A lot of times they can put the fire out with the mini pumper.”
The application process began with a mandatory public hearing Wednesday night with no comments from citizens. Danner said the next step is to go to the commission with a resolution to submit the application.
“We will have to get a resolution together and get the county commission to approve, which they did that last year when we were not funded for it,” Danner said. “I am sure they will be for that again. At the next court meeting we will have that done.”
Up to $420,000 can be awarded with the grant with a 16 percent match from the county. The Upper Cumberland Development District is drafting the grant application, which is due February 26th.
Overton County was not awarded a CDBG grant in 2020. The Community Development Block Grant provides funding on a formula basis to entitled cities and counties to develop viable urban communities by providing decent housing and a suitable living environment, and by expanding economic opportunities for low income communities.