Lincoln County JPs restore funding for Gould Fire Department

The Lincoln County Quorum Court on Monday approved five resolutions seeking grant funds for various projects and also voted to restore Gould’s Act 833 fire department funding. Gould’s Act 833 funds, which are critical to small, rural fire departments, were stopped and redistributed by the Quorum Court last December because Gould’s fire department was no longer certified, a requirement to receive the funds.

However, the city’s fire department has since been re certified and the Intergovernmental Council (composed of the mayors of Star City, Gould and Grady, the county judge and county clerk) met last month and voted to recommend that the court restore the funds.

The Arkansas State Legislature passed Act 833 in 1991 to supplement funding for local volunteer fire departments by collecting a percentage from fire insurance premiums. The law requires that the Intergovernmental Cooperation Council of each county then recommend to the Quorum Court how much each fire department should receive.

The court then approved a resolution seeking $25,000 in grant funds to buy night vision goggles for the Sheriff’s Department from the Homeland Security LETPA Grant Program.

The next resolution requests $150,000 from the GIF Rural Development Community Enhancement Grant to upgrade the west entrance to the county courthouse to include steps and a parking lot. The resolution also notes that the seldom-used west, or Drew Street, entrance is “the main entrance into the Courthouse.”

Another adopted measure seeks a $10,000 General Improvement Grant from the Southeast Arkansas Economic Development District Inc. to upgrade lighting and make “necessary repairs within the courthouse.”

The court approved another resolution requesting $20,000 from the Southeast Arkansas Economic Development District to repair the roof of the Star City Senior Center building at 201 N. Drew Street. The last resolution seeks a $5,000 General Improvement Grant (from Southeast Arkansas Economic Development District) to buy “much needed equipment” for the Sheriff’s Department.

All the resolutions were passed unanimously and without discussion.