VIDEO: WFD chief meets with City Council
Wilmington's new fire chief lays out his vision for the department before City Council.
WDEL's Jim Hilgen reports...
Addressing Council's Committee on Public Safety, Chief Anthony Goode says he has some definite ideas for the future of the department.
He wants to move forward with a program that will get city residents the training they need to become firefighters.
Goode says the department has partnered with the Delaware State Fire Training School.
"Right now, we're looking at up to 20 individuals for $13,000. We can get then the certifications, and if we do it now, and we put a plan together this month to implement next month, by March we could start our entire hiring process."
Goode says he's also looking at ways the department can position itself to provide ambulance services at some time in the future.
He says the city has a stable relationship with St Francis Hospital for EMS services.
However, he believes it's best to prepare to offer ambulance services.
"We will be looking at capital funds in the next budget cycle to actually purchase a few more ambulances, just in case something ever happened to go bad, we're prepared. It's kind of like an insurance policy."
Goode talked at length about the future, and the past of Station 5.
He says the ribbon-cutting on the new facility near Trolley Square should happen on April 1.
As for the old building, Goode believes it could be an asset to the city.
"It give us a location that we can use as an historical landmark to provide public education for the citizens of Wilmington for fire. The building is old in design, so it has a kitchen where we could bring children in and teach them kitchen safety, and how to act around stoves, and what you should be doing safety in there."
Goode says he's investigating grants and other revenue sources to pay conversion costs and upkeep on the old Station 5 facility.
Copyright © Oct 20, 2014, WDEL/Delmarva Broadcasting Company. All Rights Reserved.
Advanced permission from Delmarva Broadcasting Company required for publication or rebroadcast.