Todd Ficken, of F&D International, speaks Monday with Craig Rural Fire Protection District officials. The fire district is looking into the feasibility of building a second fire station south of The Memorial Hospital in Craig.

Photo by Scott Schlaufman

Todd Ficken, of F&D International, speaks Monday with Craig Rural Fire Protection District officials. The fire district is looking into the feasibility of building a second fire station south of The Memorial Hospital in Craig.

Craig Fire District continuing with 2nd station plans

Chris Nichols, a Craig Rural Fire Protection District Board member, emphasized a point early in Monday’s workshop discussion on a proposed second station for Craig Fire/Rescue.

The project, he said, is in the exploratory stage right now.

“All the work we’ve done to this point of going to the (Colorado Northwestern Community) College Board and The (Memorial) Hospital Board is just the preparation of checking the feasibility,” Nichols said. “We haven’t gone much further than that.”

The site of the proposed second station is south of hospital property belonging to CNCC.Niwot-based F&D International is managing the first phase of the potential second station project.

There was additional progress on the project at Monday’s workshop.

Fire board members Nichols and Byron Willems, along with fire chief Bill Johnston and battalion chief Dennis Jones, authorized F&D International Executive Director Todd Ficken to send out requests for proposal on a geotechnical investigation and first phase environmental site assessment of the property.

Fire officials asked Ficken to bring proposals to the next fire board meeting, scheduled for April 21 at the fire station, 419 Yampa Ave.

Nichols said that while the work group can approve the process of sending out requests for proposal, any expenditures, including accepting bids on the project, will require approval from the full fire board.

Ficken said that ideally he would get multiple responses for each assessment.

“I hope to have responses on those two requests for proposals,” Ficken said. “The ideal thing would be to get a couple of proposals for each of them so that the board has a selection.”

Johnston said discussions on the bids would be held in executive session and a decision would be made in public session. He also asked Ficken to make sure local companies that offer those testing services are contacted.

Ficken also suggested requests for proposal be put together for bids on the design of the proposed station.

“The next step is saying, ‘We have this concept, now maybe we need to bring an architect in and get the concept to be more construction drawings,’ move toward that level of detail,” Ficken said.

Ficken gave fire officials information on two possible approaches to the project — design-build and design-bid-build.

Fire officials opted for the latter, which includes contracting an architecture and engineering firm to create construction plans and then bidding the job out to construction companies.

The design-build approach, Ficken said, would involve a combined architectural and construction company handling the entire project.

Ficken told fire officials the design-bid-build approach allows for more public input.

He said proposals for the design step will not be ready by April 21.

“I have no idea what the timing is,” Ficken said. “I’ve got to write it and ask them again if they’re ready to solicit proposals. It could be a while.”

F & D International was awarded project management in June 2010, according to fire board records.

The board stipulated a maximum of $18,500 be paid to F&D International for the first phase of the project. To date, the fire board has paid $11,106.84, which includes services related to the project and travel costs, according to records.

According to the fire district, the project is intended to stay within the district’s budget, using money from a voter approved mill levy in 2006, and would require no new tax increases.

Nichols said part of the exploratory process currently underway is to find out information that will impact the price of construction bids. He said the geotechnical and environmental test results would still be applicable if the board chooses not to proceed with construction.

“These (tests) are just laying the ground to see if we can come up with a reasonable budget,” Nichols said.

“If we decide not to build this now, the soil testing will still be able to be used down the road.”

The proposed second station, when completed, would include four bays for vehicles, living quarters for firemen and an education room with stadium-style seating.

Additionally, it would feature several training elements including a live fire training building and a five-story tower for physical training.

Fire officials spoke with the hospital board in January about the project.

Ficken said at that meeting the department hoped to broker a land transfer from CNCC to acquire the property.

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Comments

Harlan 3 years ago

I guess I am a little confused here. Why do we need a second fire station? I don't remember this being discussed when the mill levy increase was voted on. Can anyone educate me on this one please?

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Jon Pfeifer 3 years ago

We don't need a second fire station. There is extra money there and they want to spend it (because if they don't they lose it). I'm pretty sure the mill levy increase was to buy equipment, which has been purchased. It is almost laughable that a town of this size that is not growing would build a second fire station (until you realize that it will probably happen unless people intervene).

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Harlan 3 years ago

Thanks SmallTowner, I have the same thought but was trying to educate myself on why this is necssary. I didn't see any hint of why this is even being considered in the CDP story. I am also trying to obtain a copy of the original proposal for the mill levy increase.

It's hard to imagine why this is a needed facility. Perhaps someone from the fire protection side could help us understand. This would have my support if there is concrete evidence of a problem that this new building would solve.

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als362 3 years ago

The fire dept. it seems must have an abundance of money to spend.
That being the case that means the mill levies for the fire district are too high and need to be reduced.
Then perhaps that money could be used for the good purpose of educating the kids in this county. A second fire station is not needed.

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kp81625 3 years ago

I agree with you als. We do not need a second fire station and the abundance of the mill levy should be given to the schools just knowing that they are facing serious budgets cuts.

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craigres 3 years ago

From what I have been hearing the fire dept also wants to take over the ambulance from the hospital. Not sure where the money would come from for that. Sounds like the local fire dept wants to act like a big city fire dept. Not sure if that would work I don't think the call volume would support a full time staff of four people. And what exactly would they house in the second station? Why would they want to expand when there are stations being shut down all over the country? Doesn't sound like a lot of thought has gone into it yet before it was announced to the public. Then again people in this town when they serve on a board do as they see fit without listening to the people.

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als362 3 years ago

The fire dept. is being run by a person that in my opinion is an empire builder. This person is not happy unless he can surround himself with twice as many people as is actually necessary to do the job. And lots of unneeded equipment. I have watched this person in action for many years and believe this to be an accurate description of him. This way he can act like a big shot even though he is not. There is nothing wrong with the ambulance service we now have. There is something wrong when a small town fire dept. feels the need to try and keep up with the NYFD. The people that are in charge of the fire district need to start living in reality, and stop wasting the taxpayers money on unnecessary junk.

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als362 3 years ago

The fire dept. is being run by a person that in my opinion is an empire builder. I have watched this person for many years and he is not happy unless he can surround himself with twice as many people and twice as much unneeded equipment as is actually necessary to do the job. There is nothing wrong with the ambulance service we now have. There is something wrong when our fire district thinks it needs to compete with the NYFD. The people that are in charge of the fire district need to start living in reallity and quit wasting the taxpayers dollars on unnecessary junk.

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lonelyone 3 years ago

So they want to hire full time firemen? Why? We don't have that many fires do we? And why build near the hospital? Fire trucks with sirens blaring wouldn't make for a pleasnat stay at the hospital and what about the residents in Shadow Mtn? Do they get a say in the matter. Cuz I'm thinking there is already a lot of stuff going on around there and the collage isn't even in use yet. Just wait until students start running around and then you want to add a fire deptarment to the mix? No thank you very much!

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Isis 3 years ago

Still looking for more information. I checked the Craig Fire & Rescue website and didn't see this listed anywhere. Also still looking for the original wording on the mill levy increase.

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xrsareus 3 years ago

They are going at it backwards like most government agencies do. Instead of keeping the taxpayer's informed as to why there is a need and what the plan is. They start spending money on consultants and the like. Not even asking the public if this is what they want. I would rather see a plan, stating why the need. Why that location? How it is going to be a benefit to the people? What the long term goal is? The estimated cost? Before any taxpayer money is spent. Full time firefighters are going to be very expensive....

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Harlan 3 years ago

I would like to see a public posting of the fire board meeting minutes.

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wellwell 3 years ago

Well, I guess it is time to research the 2006 mill levy. As I remember a plea went out at that time that their equipment was in bad shape. A blue and yellow tank was parked somewhere close to K Mart in a field as a visual plea. We had some fires where the ability to use a ladder truck was needed and one was bought. These probably were a viable need and the explantion was rather good.

Some of the things that stood out: Location - why by the hospital? Living quarters - why? Live fire training - why here? I DO KNOW smoke is no problem Five story tower for physical training? 5 stories for physical training? Exercise, run, diet is alot cheaper.

Maybe I can see how they would like something like this, but did we not put out our money for the fire department? Is this what we expect the fire board to do with our money? Is it responisible, reasonable use of our money, esp. in this economy?

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justthefacts 3 years ago

Fact: The Fire Board is an inbred organization.

Fact: Fire Board election results are at the will of the firefighters and their familys.

Fact: The Firefighters recruit and make sure that the only ones that get elected are part of their Mafiso organization!!!

Fact: Byron Willems is part of the group that distains public input and wants to secure a retirement job for himself. ( Still want him for City Council????)

Fact: Citizens need to attend fire board meetings and demand a mill levy reduction and refund for the misapproprated monies used, and about to be used by a group of people that lied to the public on the last election!!!!

Just The Facts about the most corrupt enity in Moffat County.

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wellwell 3 years ago

@Facts Let's play the game, "Back Your Facts" (applause)

  1. Inbred organization: Back Your Facts !!!
  2. election result is firefighters & family: Back Your Facts!!
  3. Mafiso (sp) organization: Back Your Facts!!!
  4. B W dis. public input, retirement job: Back Your Facts!
  5. misappropriated monies, lied 2 public: Back Your Facts!
  6. about most corrupt entiy (sp): Back Your Facts!!! Advertizing Break OK now it is time to Back Your Facts !!!!! (crowd) Back Your Facts, Back Your Facts, Back Your Fac
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Nadja Rider 3 years ago

Clap! Clap! - - - Applause!!!

I like this game. If everyone would "play along" and "back their facts" we wouldn't have 95% of the garbage posted on this forum.

It amazes me how mean spirited people can be under the guise of anonymity.

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wellwell 3 years ago

Thank you, thank you, thank you, aww please sit down, your making me blush, thank you, thank you, now I'm going to take you all out for cookies and milk, Thank you, What a crowd!!

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littlesister 3 years ago

I remember one time when the Fire Board had an election, the secretary put an article in the paper (2-11-00) and information on our “local news” with Bill Engler, letting the public know about the upcoming Fire Board Election. The article simply asked people to come out and vote. That 2000 board election resulted in 135 or so people voting out thousands that should have. I remember her stating that the fire board election “was just as important as any other election in this town”. There was not a board election in 2002 because no taxpayer picked up a “packet” to run for the board. In 2004 there was an election and once again only a hand full of people showed up to vote for board members, mostly firefighters and their families. Also, when the Fire Board had a meeting on the proposed mill levy and training center, only 2 taxpayers showed up for the informational meeting. You know people, if you check the news paper or check with the fire department you can get this information. The board meetings have been held on 3rd Thursday nights of every month since I can remember and are always open to the public. Do any of you attend? I know for a fact that all the board members are NOT firefighters. Maybe if you went to a board meeting you would see that. The reason sometimes there are more past firefights on the Fire Board is because they care about the Fire Department and no one else runs for the election. Call the fire station and ask to be put on the board agenda and speak, ask your question, get informed. I do think the Fire Board could do more to keep the taxpayers informed as to upcoming elections and other important matters involving our tax dollar’s, but it is still up to us to stay informed. If there is no interest from the taxpayers to become a board member then there is no election. All of us as taxpayers should be involved with how our money is being spent, whether it is OUR Fire District, OUR City or OUR County. If you don’t agree with what they are doing, get involved. It’s interesting that we never complain about the Fire Department when we need them.

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wellwell 3 years ago

@littlesister Though I don't remember seeing notices of Fire Board meeting or election in the paper, your encouragement for people to be informed, come to meetings, speak up and vote, is what is needed. This is the taxpayers money and they should be a responsible taxpayer in the spending of their money.

I did like your "Facts" and you did "Back Your Facts".

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littlesister 3 years ago

Here are some of the facts......and Just the real facts from a few Daily Press articles. 2/3/00 Legal Notice Call for Nominations 2/11/00 Two Fire Board seats available 4/28/00 Fire board election Tue. 5/3/00 One incumbent, one new member elected 12/10/01 Fireman ask for mill levy increase 2/22/02 Fire Dept. asks for mill levy increase 3/18/02 Mill levy increase proposed 2/22/02 Future of firefighting 4/10/02 Fire dept. schedules mill levy meetings 4/23/02 A battle for the bucks 4/30/02 Two residents attend last meeting 5/8/02 Fire district plans rejected, district will bring issue back 2/5/04 Legal notice Call for Nominations 3/3/04 Public notice Notice of Cancelation of regular election ( No Interest) 8/20/04 Fire district to seek tax increase 9/22/04 Only tax question on November ballot 10/16/04 Fire district wants an increase 11/3/04 No new tax money for the fire district 12/16/04 Fire Board wants input 12/17/04 Fire Board seeks another increase I don't think there has been a Fire Board election recently because of no interest. The information is out there, we as taxpayers need keep ourselves informed !!!!!!

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wellwell 3 years ago

@littlesister Your the little sister I never had. (hug) That is great research. Right on with taxpayers keeping informed, you've brought out some good information! Thanks!

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Harlan 3 years ago

littlesister & wellwell - thank you. I must raise my hand as a guilty party and admit that I didn't have any past interest or involvement. I assumed that those in charge had the public's best interest as their highest priority, and still do. But, I still do not understand why Craig would need a second fire station. Does the fire department have any public record that is available that tells me why this is needed? I guess my biggest problem is that I am shocked because I was not aware that we have a problem. What is the problem?

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saunders 3 years ago

I find this all very amusing that at a time when most organizations are struggling and cutting services an organization that is expanding services at no cost to the public would come under such fire.

I have seen the new ladder so they bought what they said they would buy. I have also seen two other new trucks so they bought those as promised. Seems to me like maybe they did a good job of being fiscally responsible with our monies and because of that they can at no extra charge to us build a second station.

Those CRIMINALS! How dare they want to build something that could improve the services they provide while at the same time providing much needed employment opportunities during an economic downturn. How dare they look to the future and have planned well enough with our tax dollars to do so.

Maybe just the facts is right and they are an inbred mafioso empire and maybe just maybe some other organizations should start following such a successful model!

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Harlan 3 years ago

to saunders,

I disagree with your statement that a second station would come at "no extra charge" or "cost to the public." Those charges appear on my property tax bill. They do have a cost.

I agree that the aged trucks were replaced as promised. I still want to know why a second station is needed. You mentioned expanding services. What are the potential expanded services? Is there a need for expanded services to the public?

I am beginning to wonder if the Craig Fire tax levy is too high.

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saunders 3 years ago

Read this.... http://www.craigdailypress.com/news/2... So because they were successful in the grant writing it saved the district by my math over $700,000 that it would have spent out of mill levy dollars. The tax levy is not too high it was just offset by DOLA funds applied for and received by the hard work of the board and firefighters at Craig Fire. With regards to the possible expanded services they were mentioned in another paper article. http://www.craigdailypress.com/news/2... In that article it mentions the possibility of CNCC using the facility to possibly offer fire science classes. This could bring more people and more dollars to our community while having a second station near the apparent growth pattern towards the west and make no mistake Craig has grown since this levy went into effect. Since the levy passed we have seen the Hampton Inn, Candle Wood Suites (both allowed to build higher than allowed in the past because of the new equipment purchased by Craig Fire), The Memorial Hospital, WalMart and the new CNCC campus just to name a few and all of this has been built on the west end of town. Where station 2 is proposed. I am by no means an expert on the additional reasons for a second station but I do believe it will be well researched and managed.

Allen I am dumber for having read your comments giving money to the schools from an unrelated and separate district is well….retarded unethical and probably illegal. I feel for the position the state has placed K-12 education in and have myself written letters and emails to the Governor and legislators of this state but the two topics are comparing apples to oranges. Perhaps you too should be lobbying for schools at the state level.

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George Robertson 3 years ago

One of the most honorable people I can think of is one that would risk THEIR life to save YOURS!

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Tammy Showalter 3 years ago

I agree with ranger520, I see no honor in driving a fire dept vehicle everywhere he goes. I also think the mill levy must be too high if they are able to have such a large surplus. But it won't be high enough when they spend all they have in surplus plus try to maintain both facilities. All the talk of coal mines closing means a lot of people will be leaving here. Look at the parking lots at the grocery stores, it is scary, but hey Craig will have two fire stations a new hospital and empty schools...I won't care because my tax dollars will no longer be supporting any of it (including the new welfare tax) on my property tax notice. I, and so will many others, go where the community we support also supports us.

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