A report on potential locations for a new fire station will be discussed by Okanogan County Fire District 6 commissioners in a special meeting at 5 p.m. on Nov. 17 in the Twisp Fire Hall. The meeting will also include a public hearing on the district’s 2018 budget.
The report was prepared by a Community Advisory Committee appointed by commissioners in January. The committee was given the task of providing commissioners information about potential sites for a new station in or near Winthrop.
Commissioners have been debating plans to build a new station for several years to replace the facility it rents in Winthrop, which district officials say is too small and poses safety hazards to firefighters. The district purchased property a few years ago on Horizon Flats for a station, hired an architect to design a new station, and held an unsuccessful levy election to fund the project.
Commissioners drew criticism from residents of the district who said the proposed fire hall was too expensive and commissioners had not adequately involved the public in discussions about the project. As a result, commissioners established the Community Advisory Committee.
Based on site selection criteria established by commissioners, the advisory committee came up with 16 suggested sites. Committee members researched the sites and narrowed the options to three locations, one of which was “unanimously regarded by the Committee as a good site,” according to a preliminary report provided to commissioners. The 3.25-acre site is on property on White Avenue, next to Little Star Montessori School.
Interim Fire Chief Cody Acord said commissioners would discuss the advisory committee’s findings, but did not expect them to make any decisions at the Nov. 17 meeting.