Fred Warchol: Firetruck burns money

June 27, 2014 

Spending $1 million for a firetruck makes sense in New York or Los Angeles, but for little Atwater? Not so much.

Some local voices of misinformation are creating an imaginary need for a firetruck that will gobble up 8 percent of Measure H safety funds for the next 10 years. The ladders on this truck surely must be gold-plated.

All this for a city that has a huge deficit in its general fund and continues to keep just a few steps ahead of bankruptcy.

Atwater has no room to make more inept financial decisions. But it did so anyway when the City Council approved the lease of five police cars; all except one are puny, four-cylinder vehicles. City officials must be unaware of something called the Crown Victoria Interceptors.

Some of the officers on the street have informed me that those four-cylinder vehicles lack acceleration, and that alone puts them at a disadvantage. And the sole turbo V6 vehicle? It’s reserved for the supervisor back at the station.

End result: Atwater is getting a “Ferrari” firetruck at the expense of “Yugo”-powered police cars!

Fred Warchol, Atwater

Editor’s note: Production of the Crown Victoria Police Interceptor was discontinued in 2011.

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