Fire Department Tops Discussions at Clearfield Boro Work Session

CLEARFIELD – The future of Clearfield Borough’s plans for housing the fire department are still up in the air after a work session Thursday night.

Last month, Deputy Chief Brett Owens told the council that there was a grant program that could provide up to $1 million to renovate an existing structure, namely Station No. 1. The problem: Station No. 1 also houses the police department.

“Personally, I feel that’s probably the best way financially,” Owens told the council Thursday.

Susan Reed, First Ward and Finance Committee chair, said that receiving a grant to create a central station would be a favorable option, but that would still leave the police station without a solution.

Councilman Mike Errigo, Second Ward, noted that the fire company has funds of its own, whereas the police department does not.

“I’ve been doing some research and most of your volunteer fire companies are self-sufficient,” said Larry Mack, Fourth Ward.

“You guys do a great job … we definitely need you,” Mack said, but asked whether the borough had ever received financial information from the fire department to state what type of funds the company had to contribute to the construction or renovation of a central station.

“If we’re going to distribute money to the fire department, we would like to know,” Mack said.

Several other council members, including Council President Jim Leitzinger, Third Ward, and Errigo agreed. Councilman Barry Reddinger, Fourth Ward, and Councilwoman Joan McMillen, First Ward, were absent.

Owens noted that he and other members of the fire department feel as though the borough does not want to assist with construction.

“We don’t see you guy telling us what you’ll do to help,” Errigo said.

Junior Councilman John Williams asked whether the grant in question could be used to renovate Station No. 1 for the fire company and Station No. 3 for the police department.

The council members and Owens were unsure, but most said it could be a possibility. PLEASE SEE CORRECTION TO THIS STATEMENT HERE.

“That’s not a bad idea,” said John Naddeo, Second Ward.

Joann McCracken, a member of Second Ward Fire Co. presented information to the council that the borough does not own the building for Station No. 2.

“The building belongs to the company, but the parking lot belongs to the borough,” she said.

Pam Peters, borough secretary, said Solicitor F. Cortez “Chip” Bell III has not yet completed paperwork to “straighten out” the mix-up on the forms.

Bell was not present for the work session.

Council also opened bids received for the fire houses in wards two and four.

Three bids were received for the Second Ward fire house: Robert Greenland, Clearfield – $36,000, Automart, Clearfield – $34,710, Clearfield Electric, Clearfield – $37,000. No bids were received for the Fourth Ward fire house.

Council will meet for their next regular meeting April 19 at 7 p.m.

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