Governor Ernie Fletcher visited Winchester today to deliver a new fire truck for the Clark County Fire Department. A $250,000 Community Economic Growth Grant (CEGG) was used by the Clark County Fiscal Court to purchase the new vehicle. Funding will also be used to repair existing fire trucks.
“Fire protection is critical to the safety and well-being of Kentucky’s citizens,” said Governor Fletcher. “The purchase of this truck will help alleviate equipment failures as well as ensure Clark County firefighters have the tools they need to prevent future tragedies.”
The Clark County Fire Department has worked through several recent challenges. Last year, a fire claimed the life of Ovie Berry, Sr., an 85-year-old Clark County resident. At the time, the fire department had two trucks that were not operating. This resulted in difficulty containing the large fire and prevented firefighters from gaining access to the home.
“Each year, fires cause extensive amounts of property damage and claim thousands of lives across the United States,” said Senator R.J. Palmer (D-Winchester). “It is vital that we provide our first responders with the equipment they need to do their job.”
On several occasions, the Clark County Fire Department had to borrow a truck from Lexington-Fayette Urban County Government, for periods of up to two months at a time.
Representative Don Pasley (D-Winchester) said, “This truck will mean so much to the residents of Clark County. This project will provide better public safety for all of our families and children.”
“With the extended growth in Clark County, we felt it was extremely urgent that we pursue this CEGG funding for basic services for the citizens of Clark County,” said Clark County Judge Executive John W. Myers. “We need to ensure that our fire fighters work with updated equipment for the safety of not only our fire fighters, but for the safety of the public as well.”
The CEGG program, which was established during the 2005 General Assembly, provided nearly $10 million in grant funds to be allocated during the 2005-06 biennium. The program is administered by the Governor’s Office for Local Development (GOLD) through the Office of State Grants. The goal of the program was to provide flexible funding to support and encourage the economic growth and viability of communities within the Commonwealth.
Counties, cities, special districts and school districts were eligible to apply for the funding. Monies were able to be utilized for construction, acquisition of property, equipment purchase, industrial site development, infrastructure and capital improvement projects.
Renaissance on Main Funding
Also while in Winchester, Governor Fletcher presented a ceremonial check for $150,000 in Renaissance on Main funding to Winchester First, Inc. and local officials. The grant will be used to rehabilitate the façades of 11 downtown businesses.
Renaissance on Main rewards communities that take steps to revitalize and maintain vibrant, economically sound development in Kentucky's downtown areas. Partners for the Renaissance on Main program include the Kentucky Heritage Council/Main Street Program, the Kentucky Department of Tourism, the Federal Home Loan Bank of Cincinnati, the Kentucky Housing Corporation, the Kentucky League of Cities, the Kentucky Transportation Cabinet and GOLD, which administers the program.