City council expected to vote on merger with Spanish Fort Fire Rescue next week
SPANISH FORT, Ala. (WKRG) – This is an essential service at Spanish Fort, but without volunteers the fire service would not exist.
“We depend on the spirit of volunteerism here in the city,” said Spanish Fort Mayor Mike McMillan.
Since 1962 the department has played a vital role on the east coast before Spanish Fort became a town. Today, the region is growing at a rapid pace, and city officials are looking to the future.
“We have a lot of opportunities to deal with, additional fire stations. We now have Fire Station #4 in the northern part of town that we’re going to need to build a fire station for. We’re going to have to build a training center. It’s going to take a lot of coordination, so the merger is the right time,” McMillan said.
The mayor said the city conducted a study with the University of Southern Alabama to examine a possible merger between Spanish Fort Fire Rescue and the city hall. The results show it’s the best decision, he says.
“It was a long process,” he continued.
Even if the change takes effect, Mayor McMillan says residents shouldn’t notice any major differences. In fact, he says the merger would actually deliver even better services as the department continues to grow and expand its footprint.
“On August 1, all members who are paid employees of the fire station will become employees of the city,” Mayor McMillan said.
That’s if the city council and the fort’s Spanish Fire Rescue Board agree on the terms. Paid members, such as the fire chief of the Spanish fort Roger Few, will keep their jobs. Mayor McMillan says there will be no changes to benefits or compensation and council will still oversee service and volunteers. The city council is expected to vote on the merger on Monday evening.