MADISON COUNTY, Ala. (WAFF) - Madison County is growing, and so is the demand on its volunteer fire stations.
The Bobo Volunteer Fire Department is looking to answer the call with a third station but doesn’t have the money.
Bobo Volunteer Fire Chief Ronald Heard said the money is going to more immediate needs.
“My first priority as chief of the department is to make sure we have trucks and we have the best possible safety equipment to enter a home,” he said.
He's looking to build a third station at the intersection of Scott and Elkwood Section roads to expand the operation.
He said the land was donated in 2019, and a new would improve response times in the community and drive down insurance rates.
There's just one problem -- finances are tight.
He said a new fire station could cost as much as $200,000 but right now, the station doesn’t have money for the job.
The Madison County Commission distributes tax dollars to 16 volunteer fire departments.
As WAFF 48 News originally reported in November, Bobo hasn’t gotten a pay bump since fiscal year 2011.
It’s sitting at $72,900 a year for trucks, gear and keeping the lights on.
Since fiscal year 2011, overall funding for all Madison County stations has shot up by more than $300,000.
Heard said more money would be helpful, but “that’s something the county commission has to decide.”
Heard said District 4 Commissioner Phil Vandiver has been good about helping the station fundraise.
Vandiver declined an interview request and said he will continue to work with the station.
If nothing changes, Heard says it could be five years before the station is built.