Holyrood Council purchases emergency radio for fire department

By Mark McCoy
Ellsworth County Independent Reporter – March 20, 2014
Submitted by Newz Group Clipping Service – March 27, 2014

The Holyrood Fire Department will receive one new, handheld emergency radio after a decision at Monday’s regular meeting by the Holyrood City Council.

Patrick Chapman, police chief, had requested the city purchase two or three radios, but the council was hesitant because of budget concerns. The cost of a radio, complete with two chargers and three sets of batteries is about $1,800. Currently, Chapman is the only Holyrood official that has a digital emergency radio that can contact or listen in to Ellsworth dispatch.

Mark Breford, Holyrood Fire Chief, told the council the city was supposed to receive a new radio when the frequencies changed from analog to digital, but money for the switch over dried up and Holyrood never received its radio. Chapman’s radio was purchased by the city following the frequency change.

“Minutes can mean the difference between life and death,” Chapman said. “If Mark can hear over the radio that something has happened, he can respond rather than wait for dispatch to page him.”

“I’m all about getting something that makes us safer,” council member Christi Herber said.

“Can you do with one radio for now and then we can perhaps buy the others at the end of the year when we know where we are with the budget?” asked council member Brandon Koch.

“We don’t have any radios now, so yes,” Breford said.

Breford and city maintenance supervisor David Zajic will share radio duties. The council asked Breford to bring the topic up again in the December meeting.

In other business:

The council decided that any agreement between the fire department, Green Garden, Palacky and Valley townships should be reviewed by the city attorney.

Gwen Romine, KSFFA Webmaster