Fire Department roasted over proposed fire training center

Want someone to run a quick meeting?

If so, call Susanne Galbraith, a Ward 1 council member who sat in for the absent Mayor John Hollowell and ran Tuesday’s Miles City Council meeting at City Hall.

Galbraith called the meeting to order and 27 minutes later it was adjourned. Yes, less than half an hour to go through the agenda.

The item that attracted the most discussion was the possibility of a training center for the fire department. The possible site is close to residents on Lynam Street and two couples -- Craig and Dannette Cremer, and Ron and Jean Pierson -- spoke out against the location for the training center.

“We really oppose that, putting it in our neighborhood,” Craig Cremer said.

“We don’t want it in our neighborhood,” Ron Pierson said.

Cremer added: “We aren’t against the training center, but somewhere else would be a good spot.”

They cited too much smoke, increased noise and the possibility of their home values decreasing as reasons for their opposition. Pierson said his home already gets hit with water during tests.

Fire Chief Gary Warren didn’t respond to the Lynam Street residents, but after the short meeting he said the department checked out another site.

“We looked at a different location, but it was cost-prohibitive,” Warren said. “We just couldn’t do it.”

No final decision has been made on the training center site.

“We aren’t that far into it,” he said. “It just comes down to cost.”

Chief Warren also provided an update through April 30 for service calls to Miles City Fire and Rescue..

There were 459 calls for the first four months of 2017, including 118 in April. The past month’s breakdown is seven for county EMS, 91 for city EMS and 20 for city fire and non-EMS service calls.

It also was noted that terms expire Dec. 31, 2017 for City Judge Al Homme and council members Ken Gardner (Ward 1), Rick Huber (2), Brant Kassner (3) and Dwayne Andrews (4).