Belgrade studying construction of new fire hall at existing or new site

Belgrade is exploring the idea to build a new fire hall, a matter that was discussed at the city council's regular meeting held last Monday (September 18).

Currently, the existing fire hall is located at 120 Walker Street to the north of Belgrade Steel Tank.

A committee has been set up to draw out what is needed in a new fire hall, especially its dimensions, number of stalls and potential locations. This information will be included in a grant application to the United States Department of Agriculture, who has a grant that could pay up to 70 percent of the cost.

The Belgrade fire department could expand on its existing location if it can purchase additional land, but the city is also studying construction of a new fire hall on the site of the former Belgrade city pool south of the city park. In that case, the south driveway would have to be altered to accommodate the extra traffic, plus a new water line would have to be installed.

If the fire hall is built in a new location, the existing building would be put on the market for sale.

The Belgrade city council meets again in regular session on Monday, October 16 at 7 p.m.

A community note...as a community-wide Kick-off to Fire Prevention week, everyone is invited to come touch a truck and take a look at some of the equipment used by firefighters on Saturday, October 7 at the Belgrade Fire Department. This is located at the Belgrade Fire Hall from 10 a.m. to noon.

In other business, the Belgrade city council:

• approved a right-of-way easement for Xcel Energy to replace 32 electrical poles in town; this is mostly a formality, as Xcel has already replaced the majority of them. The old poles were severely run down.

• approved a lawful gambling permit for the Belgrade Commercial Club to host a Purse Bingo fundraising event at the V.F.W. on Friday, November 3.

• is working with the Belgrade Centennial Committee on a draft lease for the Belgrade Museum, which is a city-owned property. The committee pays for heat and lights, and the city is not charging them rent while paying for its building liability insurance. Over the past two years, the committee has more people involved, and they are seeking grant funding to supplement the donations for the 501-c3 non-profit organization.

• discussed and approved the 2024 levy, which is set to $354,988 for the general fund next year. This represents a 2.62 percent increase from the 2023 levy of $345,925.

• approved Resolution 2023-11 to set the 2024 property tax levy and submit it to Stearns County while setting the Truth in Taxation hearing for Monday, December 4. The property tax proposal can be lowered between now and then but not increased.

 

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