The Depew Hook & Ladder Company Number one at its January 11, 1980 meeting endorsed a motion to form a tentative new truck committee to look into the replacement of the 1961 Seagrave ladder truck. Following established procedure, a letter was sent to Fire Chief Charles Scherer seeking permission from the village board to go ahead with this committee.
In his letter of January 17, 1980 to the village board, Chief Scherer recommended that permission be granted to the Hook & Ladder Company to form a truck purchasing committee. He noted in his letter to the board that it would take approximately two years to develop specifications and from twelve to eighteen months for delivery. It was a this time that a long range apparatus replacement plan was developed by Chief Scherer and his assistants and presented to the village board. This plan was primarily designed to serve as a guide to aid fiscal planning for the village.
The long range apparatus replacement plan was designed to provide guidance and assistance to the fire department and the village board in its fiscal planning over the next five years and for the long range thru the year 1995, a total of fifteen years. The plan was based on a twenty-year life expectancy of the apparatus, which is a reasonable amount of time in a volunteer fire department such as the Depew Fire Department.
At the time, a committee was planning for the replacement for the 1967 International Van. The original intentions of this vehicle were for carrying extra equipment. In the time since it was placed in service, this vehicle has been used more and more as a Rescue Vehicle. After a long hard look at the condition and use of this vehicle, Chief Scherer and his assistants recommended that the International Van be replaced.
It was also noted that the 1961 Seagrave Aerial ladder should be replaced by 1982, having been received in December of 1961 and placed in service in January of 1962. The recommendation was made that a committee be authorized to begin the planning for the replacement of this apparatus.
Following the receipt of Chief Scherer’s letter and apparatus replacement plan, Trustee Donald Snios of the fire and water committee called for a discussion meeting, to be held on February 20, 1980 with the fire and water committee, Fire Chief Scherer and the assistant chiefs concerning the apparatus replacement plan and specifications for new fire trucks.
On March 3rd, Trustee Fred Grzyb with a second from Trustee Donald Snios moved that the attorney be authorized to prepare a bond in the amount of $65,000 for a fire rescue truck for the Depew Fire Department. Trustee Pempsell cast the lone dissenting vote on the resolution stating that the fire and water committee should have reviewed this issue with the entire board. He also stated that there was no need to spend this amount of money on a rescue truck.
Speaking from the floor, former village trustee Leroy Arber and several members of the Depew Hook & Ladder Company stated that the fire department should purchase a new hook & ladder truck before a rescue truck is purchased and also objected to spending this amount of money on a rescue truck. Arber called the bond issue “ a flagrant waste of taxpayers money for a truck just to carry equipment around”. Arber also said that he would seek a public referendum to block any bond for the purchase of a rescue truck.
Depew Fire Chief Charles Scherer rebutted several members of the Depew Hook & Ladder Company who said that their hook and ladder truck is in bad mechanical shape and should have immediate priority for replacement. Fire Chief Scherer stated that this was discussed with the assistant chiefs and that they are in agreement on the issue. William Revelas, a member of the West End Hose Company Number Six, also stated that all of the chiefs were in attendance and nothing was done underhanded in the preparation of the specifications.
At the following meeting of the board of trustees on March 17,1980, a bond resolution was adopted, authorizing the purchase of a rescue truck for use by the Depew Fire Department, stating the estimated maximum cost thereof is $65,000, appropriating said amount therefore, and authorizing the issuance of $65,000 serial bonds of the Village of Depew to finance the appropriation. Evidently Trustee Charles Pempsell had a change of heart as he voted in favor of the bond resolution after initially opposing the issue.
The village clerk was then authorized to advertise for sealed bids for (1) new rescue truck with the bids to be received on April 2, 1980. One bid was received from the Churchville Fire Equipment Corporation in the amount of $64,497 for (1) Pierce/ Chevrolet Heavy Duty CRU-20 Aluminum Rescue Truck. A $15,709 payment was due within ten days after delivery of the chassis to the Pierce Manufacturing plant in Appleton, Wisconsin. For this chassis payment, $785 was to be deducted from the bid price. The bid was referred to the fire chief and village board for a recommendation and the bid was awarded to Churchville Fire Equipment Corporation on April 12, 1980 as per the proposal received.
Fire Chief Arthur J. Domino reported to the village board on May 15, 1980 that the Village of Depew would have to pay for the repairs to the Ward LaFrance engine purchased in 1979 because of the bankruptcy of the manufacturer, which apparently voided the vehicle warranty.
The engine, which is assigned to the Hose Company Number One, has had transmission problems because of a miss-match between the engine and transmission at the Ward LaFrance factory. The village recently paid $200 in engine repair costs and it is expected that at least another $100 will be needed in additional repairs.
Because of the mechanical problems, the Number One’s engine failed to meet it’s pumping capacity at the annual pump test. However, he added that the vehicle is still in service and its deficiencies are more of a long-term problem than those with an immediate effect on its performance.
A second engine, the 1965 Young/Ford assigned to the Cayuga Hose Company was also rated 5% below its rated pumping capacity at the annual test and will require repairs.
On March 16, 1981, Trustee Fred Grzyb reported to the village board, that the new Rescue Truck, which was also painted in the white over lime yellow combination, had been delivered to the Village of Depew and that he expected that it would be placed in service during the first week in April.
At this same meeting, the village attorney was authorized to review the specifications prepared by the truck committee from the Hook & Ladder Company for a new aerial ladder truck
Upon the recommendation of Fire Chief Arthur J. Domino, the village board on April 6,1981 authorized the payment of $48,788 to Pierce Manufacturing Incorporated of Appleton, Wisconsin for (I) new Pierce Crash Rescue Vehicle-20, using Chevrolet C7D042 Chassis, Serial Number C17DEAU154978, and the vehicle having met all specifications.
On May 4, 1981, Trustee Donald Snios of the fire and water committee reported that after a review of the specifications for the new hook and ladder truck, a bond resolution would be prepared for the next board meeting for the purchase of the truck.
The bond resolution authorizing the purchase of a 1500 G.P.M. combination pumper/ ladder truck including equipment and apparatus, estimated at a maximum cost of $240,000 with $12,000 from current funds and the village board adopted issuance of $228,000 in serial bonds on May 18, 1981. The bond resolution was ordered published on the official newspaper of the Village of Depew and was subject to a 30-day permissive referendum.
Trustee Snios of the fire and water committee called for a meeting on June 14, 1981 with the village board, fire chiefs and the Hook & Ladder Company truck committee and the village treasurer to further discuss the purchase of the new fire truck.
On July 6, 1981, the village clerk was authorized to advertise for sealed bids for (1) hook & ladder truck to be received on July 20th at which time two bids were received. The bid from William Shoemaker Associates, Incorporated representing the American LaFrance Fire Engine Corporation was in the amount of $256,929 with an alternate bid of $249,995 for 12 Gauge and 14 Gauge cold-rolled steel with continuous welded caulked construction in place of the 14 Gauge Type 304 Stainless Steel construction. Comprosec Corporation representing the Suthpen Corporation bid $242,748, proposing an aerial ladder constructed of aluminum. The bids were referred to the fire chief and village board for study and tabulation.
After the bids were reviewed, a supplemental bond resolution was adopted on August 3, 1981 adding $20,000 to the original amount of $240,000 in order to be able to purchase the new truck as bid per the specifications. This supplemental bond was also subject to a permissive referendum.
The bid presented by Comprosec was rejected, as it did not meet the advertised specifications in its entirety. The bid of $256,929 from the American LaFrance Fire Engine Company met all specifications and the bid was awarded to American LaFrance for (1) Custom Century Series 1500 G.P.M. Triple Combination Class A Pumper with a 100 Foot Aerial Ladder more commonly known as a Quint. The award of the contract would be finalized following the thirty -day permissive referendum period at which time Mayor Roger Paluszak and the village clerk were authorized to sign the contract with American LaFrance on August 17 1981. Trustee Donald Snios reported that three hundred seventy five working days would be required for the completion of the hook & ladder truck.
On October 19, 1981, Fire Chief Arthur J. Domino reported to the village board that after review of the drawings for the new fire truck by the Hook & Ladder truck committee, the drawings were rejected and American LaFrance is making revisions for approval by the committee.
In late September 1981, Fire Chief Domino received a letter from Central Hose Company Number Four requesting permission to begin looking for ideas for a new pumper to replace the 1963 Young built 1000 G.P.M. pumper.
Chief Domino’s response to the company was that according to fire department records, the pumper currently in service with the Number Fours was a 1964 Ford built by Young Fire Equipment Corporation and delivered in August of 1964. He further went on to state that while the fire department and village board are replacing apparatus on a twenty-year life expectancy, any apparatus recently replaced was in service for more than twenty years. As an example, the latest piece of apparatus purchased by the village, is expected to be delivered in early 1983, at which time the apparatus being replaced will have been in service over twenty-one years. The last pumper placed in service replaced a machine, which was in service for approximately twenty-two years.
Since the Number Four’s engine was purchased at the same time as the Cayuga’s engine, the village board would have to make a determination on which apparatus to replace first or to replace both at the same time as was done in the past.
After reviewing the request, Chief Domino and the assistant chiefs agreed that a decision on which apparatus to replace first would need to be made based on the general overall condition of the two pieces of apparatus. The Chief further went on to state, that the general practice has been that when a new truck is delivered, or about to be delivered, that permission then be sought to start work on a truck committee. Based on this premise, a decision will be made in early 1983 on the company’s request. The policy as stated reflected the position of the village board at the time.
It should be noted here that the new ladder truck was painted with a Dupont Imron white over red combination, which became the standard color for all new apparatus acquired by the Depew Fire Department for many years to follow.
The village clerk was authorized to advertise for bids for (1) 1983 station wagon for use of the Chief of the Depew Fire Department to replace the 1978 Mercury Marquis currently in service and on July 9, 1982, one bid was received which was rejected and was to be re-bid at a later date. After re-bidding for the station wagon for use by the Fire Chief, two bids were received and the bid was awarded to Streng Oldsmobile in the amount of $10,915 for a four-door Oldsmobile station wagon, which was painted in the white over red combination exactly as the ladder truck.
In mid-September of 1982, Fire Chief Francis (Bill) Roscoe, Trustee Donald Snios and the Hook & Ladder truck committee visited the American LaFrance plant in Elmira, New York to inspect the new ladder truck as it was being assembled. Final inspection of the truck was to be made by the truck committee at the American LaFrance plant in early December. After the final inspection, Fire Chief Roscoe recommended to the village board that the new hook & ladder truck be accepted and that a check be drawn by the village treasurer made payable to the American LaFrance Fire Engine Company with payment to be made upon delivery of the apparatus to the Village of Depew. The truck was delivered to the village on December 14, 1982 and final acceptance of this apparatus was on December 18, 1982, exactly 21 years to the day when the Seagrave ladder truck, which was being replaced, was delivered.
The truck committee consisted of the following members of the H&L Company. Chief Arthur J. Domino, Captain James S. Nusall, Henry Podsiadlo, David Strohmenger and Andrew Poremba, Sr.
A formal truck dedication followed by a dinner for the company and guests was held on April 30,1983 at the Polish Falcons Club. Invitations were also extended to former Mayor Roger Paluszak and former Village Trustees who authorized the purchase of the new fire truck. Former Fire Chief and now Mayor Arthur J. Domino presented the symbolic key to the new truck to Fire Chief Bill Roscoe who in turn made the presentation to the company officers. Walter Konsek, Sr. the oldest active member of the Hook & Ladder Company christened the truck with a bottle of champagne after Monsignor Joseph Coughlin Pastor of Our Lady Of Blessed Sacrament Church had blessed the truck. The traditional wash down by the companies of the Depew Fire Department and neighboring companies was held at a later date.
Following the delivery of the American LaFrance aerial ladder truck, the Village of Depew now had two aerial ladders sitting in the south side fire station. Trustee Donald Snios called for a meeting on January 8, 1983 with the fire and water committee and the Fire Chief to explore the options concerning the spare aerial ladder. Chief Bill Roscoe had been appraised that the Village of Springville, New York was in the market for a used aerial ladder. It was decided to contact the Village of Springville officials to see if there was any interest in the purchase of the Seagrave aerial ladder.
After the Springville officials were contacted and inspected the truck, a bid of $22,000 was submitted by the Village of Springville for the purchase of the 1961 Seagrave aerial ladder, which the Depew Village board accepted on January 24, 1983. A condition of the sales agreement was that the truck was to be delivered to the Village of Springville and the members of the Depew Hook & Ladder Company were to train the Springville firefighters in the use of the truck.
On January 17, 1984, the Cayuga Hose Company and Central Hose Company Number Four were authorized to form a truck committee for the gathering of information for the preparation of specifications for the replacement of their respective fire trucks.
The Cayuga Hose Company named the following members to serve on the new truck committee. Past Chief Charles Scherer, Assistant Chief Paul Fiegl, Robert Brotz, Donald Ast, Paul Kempski and Roger Faulhaber.
Central Hose Company Number Four’s truck committee consisted of the following members of the company. Past Chief Eugene Maciejewski, Assistant Chief Richard Kropp, Captain Donald Wegst, Jr. Lieutenant Edward F. Pyc and Lieutenant Edward E. Olenhouse.
In mid July, Trustees Florian Urbanski and Michael Rusinek sponsored a resolution authorizing Fire Chief Francis Roscoe to draw up specifications for two new pumpers to replace Engines Number Three and Four. By mid October, Trustee Florian Urbanski of the fire and water committee reported that specifications for the two new engines were well on their way to completion.
Mayor Arthur J. Domino said that the decision on whether to buy one or both new firefighting vehicles and when any purchase would be made would depend on the outcome of the review of costs and design. He estimated that the price range of each pumper truck with necessary equipment could be from $125,000 to $150,000.
Domino noted that “ we have been operating on a 20 year life expectancy…old age does creep in, the older they get the more maintenance problems you have.”
At the November 15, 1984 meeting of the village board, the village attorney was authorized to prepare a bond resolution in the amount of $300,000 to purchase one new Class A, 1250 G.P.M. pumping engine and one new Class A, 1500 G.P.M. pumping engine for the Depew Fire Department, which was subject to a permissive referendum, with a five percent down payment provided in the 1983-1984 village budget. The village clerk was also authorized to publish the notice of the proposal in the Official Village Newspaper.
Following the meeting, Mayor Arthur J. Domino estimated that the earliest the new engines could be expected would be in the fall of 1984. After delivery of the two new engines, the two 1964 engines would likely be auctioned off.
They’re being no citizen opposition to the proposal of the purchase of the two new fire engines; the village clerk was authorized to advertise for two bids. The first was for One Class A, Triple Combination, 1250 G.P.M. pumping engine with the bid to be received on January 19, 1984. The second bid was for One Class A, Triple Combination, 1500 G.P.M. pumping engine with the bid to be received on January 26, 1984.
The bids were received on January 19th by village clerk and opened with the following results. Churchville Fire Equipment Corporation and Comprosec, both declined to bid. Young Fire Equipment Corporation of Lancaster, New York submitted a bid in the amount of $167,345 and William F. Schoemaker, representing the American LaFrance Company submitted a bid in the amount of $147,994. The bids were referred to the fire chief and village board for study.
The second bid was received and opened by the village clerk on January 26, 1984. Comprosec again declined to bid. Sutphen Fire Equipment of Amlin, Ohio submitted a bid of $153,539. Young Fire equipment Corporation submitted a bid of $156,758 less price reducing options of $6,995 for a net bid of $149,763. William F. Shoemaker Submitting a bid on behalf of the American LaFrance Company in the amount of $154,994. Churchville Fire Equipment Corporation submitted a bid of $150,987. For the purchase of two identical units, a deduction of $1,000 each was offered. The bids were referred to the fire chief and village board for study.
Upon the recommendation of Fire Chief Bill Roscoe, the Depew Village board on March 6, 1984 rejected the bids offered by Young Fire Equipment Corporation and William F. Shoemaker for the 1250 G.P.M. pumping engines as the bids exceeded the amount budgeted. The board then accepted the bid of the Churchville Fire Equipment Corporation for two Class A, Triple Combination, 1500 G.P.M. pumping engines for the sum of $149,987 each as proposed.
After a review of the contract by village attorney Joseph J. Schultz, Mayor Arthur J. Domino was authorized to sign a contract between Pierce Manufacturing Corporation of Appleton, Wisconsin and the Village of Depew for two Class A, Triple Combination, 1500 G.P.M.pumping engines for the Cayuga Hose Company and Central Hose Company Number Four of the Depew Fire Department.
On December 14, 1984, it was reported to the village board that the new engine built for the Cayuga Hose Company had been delivered to the Churchville Fire Equipment Corporation in Churchville, New York and was in the final stages of preparation for delivery to the Village of Depew and the second engine for Central Hose Company Number Four was in route to the Churchville facility.
The Cayuga’s engine was delivered to the Village of Depew on January 11, 1985 and the Number Four’s rig was now in Churchville for final preparation and was delivered later in the month.
At the January 15,1985 meeting of the village board Fire Chief Irving Bauer recommended that the new pumper built for the Cayuga Hose Company by Pierce Manufacturing Corporation meets all specifications and payment was to be made in full. On February 5th, Chief Bauer also recommended that payment be made to Pierce for the Number Four’s engine as it has been received and meets all specifications.
Both companies then decided to have the formal dedication and traditional wash down by the other department and visiting fire companies on April 21, 1985 at the north side fire station.
Now the Village of Depew had two spare fire engines on hand which were advertised for sale. At one point, the Erie County Division of Fire Safety considered purchasing the two Ford Young built engines for use by the Buffalo Fire Department Fire Auxiliary Corp but the sale never materialized.
On September 15, 1985, Mayor Ronald Hadsall of the Village of Lancaster approached Mayor Arthur Domino about the possibility of the Village of Depew loaning one of the Ford engines for use by the Lancaster Fire Department since that department was down to one engine from their normal complement of three engines. Mayor Domino contacted Fire Chief Irving Bauer and village attorney Joseph Schultz and it was agreed to loan one of the spare engines, which were waiting to be sold. The 1964 Ford formerly used by Central Hose Company Number Four was sent on loan to the Village of Lancaster Fire Department with the stipulation that the Village of Lancaster would be responsible for all of the maintenance and repairs to the engine while in their use. The Village of Lancaster also agreed to provide the Village of Depew with a certificate of insurance for the truck
Mayor Hadsall was so pleased by the immediate response by Village of Depew officials that he immediately sent a letter to Mayor Domino thanking the village for its cooperation in assisting in relieving the crisis which left the municipality of 15,000 citizens without adequate fire protection equipment.
In June of 1986, the Village of Springville made an offer of $6,000 for the 1961 Ford engine number three, which the Depew Village board accepted with the stipulation that the sale was “as is” and finally on December 16, 1986, the informal bid of $3,000, received from the Hopewell Fire Apparatus Service of Hopewell Junction, New York for the remaining 1961 Ford, which had been in use by Central Hose Company Number Four was accepted
On January 7, 1986, Trustees Charles Pempsell and Mark LiPuma sponsored a resolution giving permission to the Aetna Hose Company to form a new truck committee to draw up specifications for a replacement for the 1967 American LaFrance engine, that was in service.
The Aetna Hose Company new truck committee included the following members of the company. Past Chief Irving Bauer, Assistant Chief Daniel McCormick, Verne Prior, Gary Cummings, John Garbacz and Jerome Wawrzyniak
In the spring of 1986, the Hose Company Number One and the West End Hose Company had brought it to the attention of the village board of the deteriorating condition of the two Ward LaFrance engines in service. After an inspection of the apparatus by the members of the fire and water committee and fire chiefs, it was decided to have these two engines refurbished.
On May 20, 1986, the village attorney was authorized to draw up a bond resolution for various capital expenditures including $60,000 for refurbishing of the two engines and on June 3rd the bond resolution authorizing the re-construction of the two fire trucks, stating the maximum cost thereof to be $60,000, of which $3000 was in current funds and the issuance of $57,000 in serial bonds of the Village of Depew to finance the appropriation.
Fire Chief Donald Messenger appointed Assistant Chief Kenneth Balzer and Assistant Chief James Nusall to work with the refurbishing committees from the West End Hose Company and Hose Company No. 1 in drawing up specifications for the work to be done on the two rigs. It was decided by the committee, that when the two engines were to be repainted, that they would conform to the standard color of white over red which the fire department had adopted since both of these units had been painted lime yellow when purchased new.
By September 16, 1986, the specifications were completed and the village clerk was authorized to advertise for bids to refurbish the two engines. The bids were received on November 19, 1986 as follows. Sabre Custom Service Incorporated indicated that they were unable to bid the project. R.D. Murray of Hamburg, New York bid $28,245 for work on Engine Number One and $26,147 for work on Engine Number Six. Both bids also had options for added equipment. The other bid received was from the Fire Tech Company of Hamburg, New York was in the amount of $25,400 for Engine Number Six and $29,200 for Engine Number One
Chief Donald Messenger and Assistant Chiefs Balzer and Nusall undertook a comprehensive review of the specifications and bids offered. After contacting the City of Buffalo Fire Apparatus Superintendent and Hamburg Volunteer Fire Department for who Fire Tech Equipment & Apparatus Incorporated had refurbished apparatus, it was determined that these two departments were not at all satisfied with the quality of workmanship and inferior service provided by Fire Tech. The company also failed to provide certificate of insurance for minimum liability coverage, property coverage and garage keeper insurance coverage as requested in the bid specifications. The refurbish committee recommended that the bid of Fire Tech be rejected from consideration.
The committee recommended that the bid of R.D. Murray be accepted as it met or exceeded the standards of the Depew Fire Department as outlined in the bid specifications. At the December 2, 1986 meeting the village board upon the recommendation received from Fire Chief Donald Messenger awarded the bid to R.D. Murray in the amount of $55,978 to refurbish the two engines.
By April 4, 1987, the West End Hose Company Number Six engine was completed and placed back in service. At the April 14th meeting of the village board, Fire Chief Donald Messenger recommended that payment be made to the R.D. Murray Company as the refurbished engine was back in service and upon inspection of the rig by truck committee of the West End Hose Company and fire chiefs, all work was completed and all specifications had been met.
Mayor Arthur Domino who had also inspected the fire truck commented that the refurbishing was a wise decision. He said that he felt that the truck was in better condition than when originally delivered.
By early July, the work on Engine Number One had been completed and it was placed back in service, however, additional work was required on Engine One after it was discovered that the condition of the truck was worse than anticipated. A change order to the original contract was authorized and final payment in the amount of $33,389 was made at the village board meeting of July 7, 1987.
The following month Village Attorney Joseph J. Schultz informed the board of trustees that the specifications for the Aetna Hose Companies new truck had been completed and after his review, Schultz indicated that the specifications were ready to begin the bidding process. Trustees Mark LiPuma and Charles Pempsell offered a resolution authorizing the village clerk to proceed and advertise for bids for one 1500 G.P.M. Class A Triple Combination pumping engine.
The bids were received and opened on September 17, 1987. American Eagle Fire Apparatus Company of Gainesville, Florida bid $199,409. William Shoemaker of Hamburg, New York bid $218,945 for an engine built by Saulsbury Fire Equipment Corporation of Tully, New York and a third bid was received from the Sanford Fire Apparatus Corporation of East Syracuse, New York in the amount of $196,600. The bids were then referred to the fire chief and the mayor and village board for study.
On October 20th, upon the recommendation of the truck committee of the Aetna Hose Company, fire and water committee and village attorney, all of the bids submitted were rejected as being excessive and exceeding the monetary amount set forth by the village board. The village clerk was now authorized to re-advertise for bids for the replacement engine.
Permission was also granted the Hook & Ladder Company to take the American LaFrance aerial ladder truck to the service facility at Dunmore, Pennsylvania for repairs of the damage sustained to the rig at the “C” Kitchen’s fire at Walden and Transit on August 30, 1987
On November 12, 1987, bids were received and opened with Comprosec Corporation declining to bid. The only bid submitted was by the Saulsbury Fire Equipment Corporation in the amount of $218,495.
At the December 1st meeting a transfer in the amount of $1,250 to the capital Projects Account was authorized by resolution of the village board for the down payment of a 1500 G.P.M. pumping engine and a bond resolution was ordered to be prepared for the December 15th meeting in order to purchase the fire engine for the use of the Aetna Hose Company.
Fire Chief Donald Messenger recommended that the bid submitted by William Shoemaker in the amount of $218,495 for a Saulsbury pumping engine is accepted and the village board then authorized a bond resolution in the amount of $225,000 to cover the cost of the purchase. Village Attorney Joseph J. Schultz stated that the bond resolution would be ready for the board’s consideration at the next meeting on December 15th.
On December 15, 1987, the bid of William Shoemaker for one Saulsbury Class A Triple Combination 1500 G.P.M. pumping engine was accepted and a bond resolution was authorized in the amount of $225,000 and included $1,845 in current funds. The village clerk was authorized to publish the bond resolution in the Official Newspaper and the bond was subject to a 30-day permissive referendum.
In the meeting of March 16, 1988, Village Attorney Schultz reported that the contract has been received from Saulsbury for the new Aetna Hose Company engine and has been signed by Mayor Arthur J. Domino. The contract called for a partial payment upon delivery of the chassis and the balance of the payment will be due upon delivery and acceptance of the truck by the Village of Depew.
In mid-July 1988, a new fire chief’s station wagon was ordered and received and after an inspection by Fire Chief Richard Kropp, a recommendation was made to make payment to Gillogly Chevrolet, Inc in the amount of $11,108.14.
Under the report of the public safety committee, formerly the fire and water committee, it was reported in early February, that the Aetna truck was at the factory bring painted and delivery was expected by mid-March, however, this delivery date was set back. At the same time a communication was received from William Shoemaker Associates with a formal bid offering for the 1967 American LaFrance engine which was being replaced. The bid was tabled and referred to the entire board.
Roy’s Fire Apparatus Repair submitted a second bid for the American LaFrance engine on April 11, 1989. The village board also tabled this bid.
A letter was received by the village board from Fire Chief Richard Kropp recommending the acceptance of the Aetna new engine and that the final payment be made to Saulsbury on May 6, 1989.
At the same time Chief Kropp requested that the replaced American LaFrance engine be removed from the south side fire station. This request was referred to the public safety committee and the Superintendent of Public Works Vincent LiPuma. It was decided to move the engine to the Department of public works garage on Borden Road until a decision could be made on the disposition of the apparatus.
Trustee James Nusall voiced concern in early August that the American LaFrance engine being stored at the D.P.W. was exposed to the elements and requested action on the disposition of the apparatus as he felt that this exposure would cause the deterioration of the rig and lessen its value.
A new bid in the amount of $1200.00 was received from Roy’s Fire Apparatus, Morton Corners Road, Springville, New York, which was accepted by the village board.
On May 18, 1992, (1) bid was received from West-Herr Ford in the amount of $18,876 for a 1992 Ford Explorer, 4x4 for use by the fire chief replacing the Chevrolet Station Wagon purchased in 1988.
At the December 21, 1992 meeting, Trustee James Nusall reported on the extensive damage incurred to the 1979 Ward LaFrance fire truck operated by Hose Co. No. 1 while responding to an alarm of fire at the Depew High School On Friday December 11th. The truck collided with a van at the intersection of Olmstead and Transit Road. The engine then struck a pole, which resulted in an estimated $79,000 damage to the apparatus.
Mayor Arthur Domino stated that an arson fire at the high school could have resulted in the death or serious injury to the responding fire fighters; fortunately, the firemen sustained only minor injuries. A 14-year-old youth was arrested by Depew Police and charged with arson and criminal mischief. The blaze was preceded by a series of false alarms that had been turned in from the school recently.
On March 15, 1993, Trustee James Nusall reported that an inspection was made of the fire truck involved in the accident several months earlier and the truck looks like a new one. The truck should be back in service very shortly after a few minor details are resolved, said Nusall.
Permission was granted to Fire Chief Kenneth Balzer on February 7, 1994 to form a truck committee to prepare specifications for a replacement vehicle for Rescue Truck No. 7 operated out of the West End Fire Station. The motion to grant permission was made by Trustees Francis Roscoe and James Nusall.
The committee appointed by the West End Hose Co. No. 6 consisted of Michael Moskal as Chairman assisted by David Adamberger, Michael D. Hehir, John Priebe and Robert Romanowski.
Trustees Florian Urbanski and William Maryniewski sponsored a resolution on June 24, 1996, to authorize the village clerk to advertise for bids for (1) Fire Rescue Truck.
One month later on July 24th, Trustees Joan Priebe and Florian Urbanski’s motion, to authorize the village treasurer to establish a capital reserve for the purpose of purchasing a fire truck and authorized the transfer of funds from the general fund to the capital reserve fund in the amount of $100,000, was passed unanimously by the board.
Fire Chief David Strohmenger, on August 26, 1996, informed the village board that the bid received for a new Fire Rescue Truck was much higher than was anticipated and recommended that the bid be rejected and after modification of the specifications, the project be re-bid. Trustees Francis Roscoe and Joan Priebe offered a resolution to reject the bid and authorized the village clerk to re-advertise for a new Fire Rescue Truck.
The new bids were received on and were referred to the fire chief and village board for further study.
On November 11, 1996, upon the recommendation of Fire Chief Strohmenger, Trustees Florian Urbanski and William Maryniewski moved to accept the bid of West Seneca Emergency Equipment, Inc. in the amount of $295,386 for (1) twenty-foot Fire Rescue Squad Truck
A change order was ordered for the construction of the Fire Rescue Truck on February 24, 1997 on the motion of Trustee James Nusall and Trustee Joseph McIntosh. The change order resulted in a net cost reduction of $683.00.
On April 7, 1997, Trustees Joan Priebe and David Mazur offered a resolution authorizing a change order consisting of 11 items between the Village of Depew and the Marion Body Works, Inc. for the furnishing of (1) Marion 20-foot Rescue Squad Truck on a 1997 Simon-Duplex Model 9400 Tilt Cab Chassis to the Village of Depew. The changes some of which were at no charge, resulted in a net savings of $1122.00. The resolution was approved unanimously.
One week later on April 14th, another change order was authorized to contract with Marion Body Works, to bring the lighting package up to National Fire Protection Association Standards. This motion was made by Trustee John Fragale and Trustee Joseph McIntosh and was carried unanimously.
At the October 6, 1997 meeting of the village board, Trustee Nick Sherwood and Joan Priebe sponsored a resolution authorizing the acquisition of a Fire Rescue Truck estimated maximum cost thereof is $107,943 and appropriating said amount therefore and authorized the issuance of $107,943 in serial bonds of the Village of Depew to finance said purchase.
On October 14th, the Village Treasurer was authorized to set up a Capital Projects Fund in order to transfer $78,922.36 from the Capital Reserve Fund in order to make payment for the Rescue Truck
A month later the board authorized the Depew Fire Department to place ads in the Emergency Service News and other publications offering for sale by the village of the Pierce Rescue truck which had been in service since 1981.
On November 24th, final payment in the amount of $162,678 to Marion Body Works, Incorporated of Marion, Wisconsin for the Marion RS-21 Custom Walk-in Rescue Truck with the stipulation that the remaining outstanding issues be resolved to the satisfaction of the Depew West End Hose Company No. 6 and the Depew Fire Department prior to the final payment.
Dedication and traditional wash-down of the new rescue truck was held at the West End Fire Station on Sunday April 5, 1998. Members of the village board and fire department were invited to an open house to celebrate the occasion. Commissioner Arthur J. Domino of the Erie County Department of Emergency Services and former Mayor and Fire Chief in the village recalled the brief history of the West End and the various apparatus that had been in service with the company.
In July 1998, an offer was received from the Southern Fire Equipment Company of Jackson, Mississippi for the used rescue truck. The bid of $40,000 was accepted on August 6th and Mayor Robert Kuczewicz was authorized to sign the sales agreement for the sale of the truck, vehicle identification number C17DEAV154978.
In mid 1999, a proposal was made by Fire Chief Jack Edwards to sell the 1957 Ward LaFrance, #3054, 750 gallon pumping engine, which had been kept as a reserve engine. This unit was stored at the north side fire station and was slowly starting to deteriorate from just standing and not being utilized. Additional space would be provided in the truck room if the rig were disposed of.
Mayor Robert Kucewicz and the Village Board authorized Chief Edwards to seek a way to dispose of the rig. It was taken to Scherer’s Auction Inc. and a minimum bid of $1,500 was sought. The bidder, Alden’s Truck Limited offered $1,600, which was accepted in November 1999.
Earlier in 1999, Chief Jack Edwards sought and received permission to have Hose Company Number One and West End Hose Company Number 6 to each form a committee to prepare specifications for the replacement of their respective rigs.
Hose Company Number One appointed Scott Hossfeld as Chairman with Robert Schiller, Edward Gasiecki, Mark Klyczak, Michael Fray and Jack Edwards to the truck committee.