Cyrus Fire Hall gets legislative boost
MORRIS – The Cyrus Fire Department may be getting some help from the Minnesota Legislature to build a new fire hall and community center.
On Wednesday, Rep. Jay McNamar and House Majority Leader Erin Murphy stopped in Cyrus to announce that $225,000 has been included in both the House and Senate bonding bills to help pay for the project.
As a former volunteer firefighter, McNamar said he recognized the problems with the fire hall immediately. One of the biggest challenges of the existing fire hall is getting all six of the department’s vehicles in and out of the single door – a problem that can delay response times for the department.
“When I was a volunteer fireman we had a house fire where we had two children lose their lives – that’s impacted me for the rest of my life and I don’t ever want to see that here,” said McNamar. “When you have a time delay getting to a fire, it means somebody’s life may be in danger.”
The Cyrus project on the radar as a possible addition to the bonding bill last October when McNamar came to Cyrus for the department’s annual fish fry fundraiser.
About two weeks later, members of the House Capital Investment Committee visited Cyrus to take a look at the fire hall, said Assistant Fire Chief Jeff Anderson.
Anderson also noted that improving the facility will impact communities outside of Cyrus.
“This is going to make us better to better help Morris and Hancock and Donnelly for mutual aid,” said Anderson. “It’s definitely going to benefit more than just us.”
McNamar cautioned that the project is not a “done deal” yet. The project is included in both the House and Senate versions of the bonding bill, but the bill still needs to pass in both chambers and be signed by Gov. Mark Dayton.
“All I can say is this: Governor Dayton, build this fire hall,” said McNamar.
The project has the support of some key allies, including Murphy (DFL-St. Paul).
“I want to make sure that the people of Cyrus and St. Paul and St. Peter and St. Cloud all have adequate public safety, good fire responses, good public works – that’s our job as a statewide legislature,” said Murphy.
“Jay is such a great and strong advocate – I am with him that we to make sure this is in the final bonding project,” she continued. “I’m here to let you know that I’ll use whatever klout I have to make sure we get this done because I understand why it’s so important.”