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Weyburn Fire Dept. to get new trucks

City council

City council approved a total expenditure of $646,000 for two new fire trucks for the Weyburn Fire Department, as a large contingent of fire fighters were on hand Monday evening to witness the decision and support Fire Chief Steve Debienne.Debienne explained that he opted for a request for proposal from manufacturers of fire trucks instead of putting out a tender, which allowed him to submit a list of specifications to the manufacturers to see what they would offer.The trucks included a 2011 rescue pumper, and a 2011 tanker pumper, and the Fire Department received proposals from three companies; Debienne recommended the purchase of a rescue pumper from Rocky Mountain Phoenix for the price of $407,000, and the tanker pumper from Green Acres Emergency Vehicles for $239,900.For the rescue pumper, the other prices were much higher, at $436,514 and $448,166 from Fort Garry Industries and Safetek. Asked if these price differences alarmed him, Chief Debienne said, I was substantially surprised that Rocky Mountain was the lower bid, but in talking to reps from all three companies, it depends on what part of the market they want. Rocky Mountain Phoenix has more apparatus in major cities than the other companies do.The fire chief explained when he went over the proposals, he had a series of requirements that he had to rate each proposal on, and these included such needs as equipment capabilities, documented cold weather operation and reliability, vendor service and support, safety features for the fire fighters and the initial purchase price of equipment.One of the advantages of the new tanker pumper is that it will assist dramatically in the supply of adequate water to all areas of the city, as well as helping with fire fighting in rural areas. Both of these trucks have a lifespan of 20 years, and were part of the Fire Departments long-term goal in terms of being up to proper fire fighting standards, explained the fire chief.Council was told also that the city will be self-financing the purchase of these two trucks through the capital equipment reserve, and Debienne will build into his department budget a repayment plan with an extra one per cent so the monies are replaced in the reserves.Coun. Bill Rudachyk said the issue of buying new equipment for the Fire Department goes back to the 1980s, and has long been an issue for the city, but the bottom line is its for the safety of the citizens of Weyburn and area.They have to have the kind of equipment that will support our fire fighters in the event of a major fire, he said.With increased sales of residential lots by the city, and lower costs for the construction of underground utilities, the city has extended a tender to allow the utilities to be prepared for an additional 77 lots for the city.The city has sold 37 lots so far in 2010, leaving only 30 lots in the citys inventory that are available for sale.After some cuts in the citys budget, the city had tendered for utilities to be installed for a number of lots in the Assiniboia Park subdivision, which are the new blocks of streets across from the school of the same name at 13th Street, north of Fifth Avenue.The lots on three streets were initially cut for this year; however, as the awarded construction contract is much lower than what had been estimated, they found they could add back in the three streets and still be under their budgeted amount of $1.56 million; adding in the three streets brings the amount up to $1.49 million.With this contract extension, a total of 77 lots will now be prepared.These will include eight lots on Johnston Drive; 18 lots on McTaggart Drive; 17 lots on Veterans Road; 11 lots on Veterans Way; 17 lots on Schlosser Drive; and six lots on Button Road. The lots for Veterans Way, Button Road and Schlosser Drive were the ones which were added to the contract for the contractors, which will be building watermains, storm sewer, sanitary sewer and service connections to enable housing to be constructed on these lots.In an update from the Leisure Services Commission, an update was given of the construction ongoing at Crescent Point Place and the Tom Zandee Sports Arena.According to Mathew Warren, director of Leisure Services, the anticipated completion date for Crescent Point Place is Friday, Oct. 1, with the Weyburn Red Wings home opener for the season to be held on Oct. 8.Warren asked the commission for ideas on something special that could be done at the Oct. 8 game; after some discussion of several ideas, commission members felt that all ice users should be involved in the plans.Lianne Cretin from the Skating Club visited the commission, and informed them the club has bought two jump harnesses to be used as a training aid, to help skaters with jumping techniques. The harnesses are a pulley-type device that needs to be anchored into the roof of the building; one is to be used on-ice, and one in the lobby of the arena. She was informed that engineered drawings would need to be provided to arena staff before they could install it.The commission also discussed the replacement of the current LED sign for the exhibition grounds; Crescent Point Energy has agreed to replace the sign with a Watchfire sign that is of a higher quality and can be partially programmed by city staff.