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Section A: General News


ESD No. 1 board OKs generator purchase


ESD No. 1 board OKs generator purchase
Members of the Wilson County Emergency Services District No. 1 board bid farewell after the Dec. 13 board meeting to board President Michael Hanson (center), who will step down from the board Dec. 31. He did not seek another term. Those in attendance for the meeting included (from left) board appointee Bill Mercado, Treasurer George Jones, Secretary Roberta Ensor, board appointee Terry Post, and Assistant Treasurer Tommy Terry. Board Vice President Larry Bratten, who was not present, also did not seek reappointment. Mercado and Post will be sworn in by the Wilson County Commissioners Court Jan. 1.


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Wilson County News
December 19, 2012
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LA VERNIA -- The Wilson County Emergency Services District (ESD) No. 1 board has agreed to purchase two secondhand generators to provide backup electrical power for both stations of the La Vernia Volunteer Fire Department (VFD).

At its Dec. 13 meeting, the ESD board voted to reallocate $7,000 from its vehicles fund to purchase the 100-kilowatt generators, which, according to board member Tommy Terry, are military surplus units that have been reconditioned. Each unit has an approximate cost of $3,500.

Also during the meeting, the board discussed the continued quest toward the reduction of the ESD’s Insurance Services Office -- commonly referred to as ISO -- rating. This number is used by insurance companies to determine fire insurance rates, based on the fire prevention and fire suppression capabilities within a geographic area. Higher ratings mean higher fire-insurance premiums.

The board’s treasurer, George Jones, said the district has a rating of 7 in the city of La Vernia, 9 in the rural areas. He said the ESD’s goal is for these to be reduced to ratings of 4 and 6, respectively. Part of that will come from the findings of ongoing inspections of commercial buildings by the district’s service provider, the La Vernia VFD.

“Maybe we’ll save people 5 to 10 percent on their homeowner’s insurance,” Jones said. “That could be worth hundreds of thousands of dollars for the people in this community.”

Anyone with questions about the inspections is urged to contact fire Chief Jason Scheel at 830-779-2438.

The ESD board also is looking for ways to finish outfitting Rehab 1, a bus being converted as a vehicle for use in rehabilitating firefighters at emergency scenes. Board President Michael Hanson said that while the bus is operable and its cabinetry is complete, one of its two air-conditioning units needs to be recharged and the project has stalled, as no more money is left in the budget for that line item.

Board Secretary Roberta Ensor said she is researching the application of a Power Up grant from the Guadalupe Valley Electrical Cooperative, which could help fund the remainder of the project. Hanson said the bus also needs to be stocked with supplies, such as drinking water, and he welcomes donations from the public.

Dec. 13 also was Hanson’s last meeting as a board member, as his term ends Dec. 31. He and fellow board member Larry Bratten -- who was not present -- did not seek reappointment. They are being replaced by Terry Post and Bill Mercado. Tommy Terry, who filled an unexpired term left vacant by Herb Williams, was reappointed by the Wilson County Commissioners Court.

In other business, Ensor announced to the board that the ESD now has a page on Facebook. Meeting agendas and other news will be posted there.

***In attendance: Board members Michael Hanson, George Jones, Roberta Ensor, and Tommy Terry; board appointees Terry Post and Bill Mercado; Fire Chief Jason Scheel, Assistant Fire Chief Corey Scheel, and board President Casey Stewart of the La Vernia Volunteer Fire Department.

 

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