By Tim Leeds 

City, county partner for industrial park fire protection, improve rural coverage


The Havre city government and Hill County Commission just announced they have teamed up to have the city fire department provide service to an industrial park the county pushed for, with the county buying a new fire truck to help with that service.

"This investment is really a win-win for both the City of Havre and the residents of Hill County who live in Rural Fire District No. 1," Havre Fire Chief Dave Shepard said in a press release announcing the agreement and new fire truck. "This project is proof that when people work together for a common purpose the end result can be beneficial for everyone."

The county has been working on developing the Montana Agro-Energy Industrial Park since it was awarded funds by the state Legislature in 2009, money that came through the American Recovery and Reinvestment Act.

The park, about six miles south of Havre west of Fort Assinniboine, is intended to house businesses in the fields of alternative energy and value-added agriculture. Work is ongoing to put in the infrastructure to allow businesses to move in and set up shop.

"The Legislature allocated funding to help develop the infrastructure for the industrial park, including providing added fire protection for potential future businesses who may locate there," Mike Wendland, chair of the Hill County Commission, said in the release.

The county and city entered an interlocal agreement to have the industrial park protected as part of Rural Fire District 1, which is covered by the Havre Fire Department, and the county purchased a Ford F-750 fire fighting truck with a 2,000 gallon water tank that can dispense water at a rate of 750 gallons per minute for the fire department to improve its coverage in the district.

"This is very good news for our area and it couldn't have happened without everyone working together," he said. "Funding for the fire truck came to the State of Montana through the American Recovery and Reinvestment Act, was allocated to Hill County by the Montana Legislature and the City of Havre and Hill County agreed on how best to utilize the equipment. There is now better fire protection for the residents and businesses of Rural Fire District No. 1 and we can now appropriately serve any future business who locates in the industrial park."


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