Apollo VFD #3 asking for financial help
The president of one of Apollo's two volunteer fire departments is asking the borough for financial help, while the department and council are watching with interest what happens with a proposed fire tax in neighboring North Apollo.
Lyle Rusz, president of Apollo Hose Company No. 3, said his department is not in danger of closing, but needs help.
“We're fumbling along,” he told council Thursday. “We're keeping our nose above water. That's about all we're doing. We do need some help.”
Rusz said the department has gotten “hardly anything” from residents and businesses in response to its annual fundraising drive.
The response is so bad that last year the department didn't bother to send the letters out, he said.
“It wasn't worth the time and the effort,” he said.
Apollo gives Apollo Hose Company No. 3 and Apollo Hose Company No. 2 $1,750 each year.
North Apollo is considering collecting $80 each year from every property in the borough to support its volunteer fire department, which said it was in danger of folding. North Apollo Council could vote to enact that tax April 1.
Funding like that would be “fantastic,” Rusz said. But, “I know the people in Apollo can't afford it.”
Council President David Heffernan said council won't consider a fire tax unless the two departments merge.
“It would not make sense to do that and split it between two departments,” he said.
Rusz said his department would not oppose merging.
The No. 2 department opposed the idea the last time it was discussed.
“It's coming down the pike everywhere,” Rusz said.
Rusz asked if council could help by not charging it for sewage, letting it use the borough's fuel and helping to promote its fundraising efforts.
“Anything they can do would help,” he said.
Council said it can include fire department information in bills. Heffernan said the council will have to talk more about the other requests.
It would help if residents and business owners gave whatever they could, even $10, Rusz said.
“There's a lot of homes that don't give us anything,” he said. “Whatever they can afford would be great.”
Brian C. Rittmeyer is a staff writer for Trib Total Media.
Show commenting policy
TribLive commenting policy
You are solely responsible for your comments and by using TribLive.com you agree to our Terms of Service.
We moderate comments. Our goal is to provide substantive commentary for a general readership. By screening submissions, we provide a space where readers can share intelligent and informed commentary that enhances the quality of our news and information.
While most comments will be posted if they are on-topic and not abusive, moderating decisions are subjective. We will make them as carefully and consistently as we can. Because of the volume of reader comments, we cannot review individual moderation decisions with readers.
We value thoughtful comments representing a range of views that make their point quickly and politely. We make an effort to protect discussions from repeated comments either by the same reader or different readers.
We follow the same standards for taste as the daily newspaper. A few things we won't tolerate: personal attacks, obscenity, vulgarity, profanity (including expletives and letters followed by dashes), commercial promotion, impersonations, incoherence, proselytizing and SHOUTING. Don't include URLs to Web sites.
We do not edit comments. They are either approved or deleted. We reserve the right to edit a comment that is quoted or excerpted in an article. In this case, we may fix spelling and punctuation.
We welcome strong opinions and criticism of our work, but we don't want comments to become bogged down with discussions of our policies and we will moderate accordingly.
We appreciate it when readers and people quoted in articles or blog posts point out errors of fact or emphasis and will investigate all assertions. But these suggestions should be sent via e-mail. To avoid distracting other readers, we won't publish comments that suggest a correction. Instead, corrections will be made in a blog post or in an article.
- New Kensington resident looks to transform city
- Retiring Arnold, Lower Burrell mayors look back with contrasting views
- Lower Burrell family opens home to old-fashioned Easter egg hunt
- Aspinwall searches for new police chief
- Program aims to spark grass-roots revival of New Ken
- Man in New Kensington standoff charged
- Freshman arrested in Burrell High School bomb threat
- Eagle egg breaks, parents abandon nest
- Kiski Area Intermediate School band chosen to play at state conference
- Smaller properties in Alle-Kiski Valley remain attractive to drillers
- Leechburg hosts vigil to halt drugs, violence in the community