21 votes cast on Guilderland Center Fire Department's truck bond

Several Guilderland Center residents voiced concern about low voter turnout to bond a $400,000 fire truck, but noted the new equipment is necessary to protect residents.

The bond to purchase a new fire truck at the Guilderland Center Fire Department was approved 17-4 on Tuesday, June 9.

All residents in the Guilderland Center fire district were eligible to vote. The department has close to 50 volunteers.

One Guilderland Center resident, Barbara Mabee, said she was concerned the vote was not better advertised.

I think its' shameful, Mabee said. "We have the right to vote."

She added, though, that while the government often carelessly spends money, she would have supported the fire truck bond if given a choice.

Another resident echoed that sentiment: Henry Elario said he was unaware of the vote, but would have supported the measure if he had been aware there was a vote.

"They didn't do much to promote it," he said.

The residents did not display concerns about the affirmative vote to bond the truck and each of them enumerated reasons why it is important to have the best possible equipment for the volunteers.

"This poor little fire department. They need equipment," said one resident Emilia, who did not want her last name published.

She added that with housing developments like Glass Works Village being planned, and ones like Dutchmen Acres being discussed, it is important that the fire departments are prepared to handle any emergency.

A volunteer at the Guilderland Center Fire Department who asked not to be named said low turnout has always been an issue, and a vote with 21 people is not uncommon.

The Guilderland Center Fire District Board of Commissioners passed a resolution on the bond on April 20, and notice of the vote was first given on the town's Web site last month. The vote took place on Tuesday, June 9, from 6 p.m. to 9 p.m.

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