KFD chief talks about bond

By CRAIG MURPHY Of the Keizertimes Ambulances are meant to tow people in need of help to hospitals. Ambulances are not meant to need a tow to a mechanic while a patient needs urgent care. And yet that’s what the Keizer Fire District has been experiencing. That is one of the key reasons the KFD is running an emergency equipment bond measure on the November ballot. Fire chief Jeff Cowan has been busy talking about the measure, talking earlier this month at the West Keizer Neighborhood Association and the Greater Gubser Neighborhood Association meetings, among others. To underscore the need for new equipment, promotional material put out by the KFD includes a picture of an ambulance being towed. “The newest ambulance is one we got in 2008,” Cowan said at the Sept. 17 GGNA meeting. “It has been a lemon. It was in the shop for nine months last year. We had it fail twice on 911 calls.” In 1996, Keizer voters approved a 20-year bond to pay for the KFD headquarters on Chemawa Road. That bond will be paid off in February, with the new bond taking its place if approved. The new bond is for fire trucks, ambulances and various emergency equipment and apparatus. “Our staffing and service levels have improved,” Cowan said. “Now it’s all about the equipment. We’ve sacrificed equipment for people over the years,...

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