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Efforts Underway to Merge Pierce City Fire Agencies

PIERCE CITY, Mo.-- Two Pierce City fire departments are working to merge into a single unit.
PIERCE CITY, Mo.-- Two Pierce City fire departments are working to merge into a single unit.

"We're looking at either a lease for a dollar a year or we'll take over their equipment, their trucks for a dollar a transfer," said Rick Mercer, Pierce City Fire Chief.

The city council has already approved combining the Pierce City Fire Department and the Pierce City Rural Fire Department, into the Pierce City Fire Protection District.

"It's important to have a fire department in your community as part of the community," said Chief Mercer.

The move will consolidate resources, making it easier to budget for the departments needs.

"When we were under a membership department, you had to go out and collect money and track down who's moved in who's moved out. So, now that's all done through the tax system, the county clerks," said Chief Mercer.

The city station was built using federal grants, complicating the process of the new fire protection district obtaining the building and the equipment from the city, but merging personnel isn't as tough.

"Everybody knows each other, they know the systems, they know the procedures. So, it's really not a challenge, it's just a transitions management that's basically occurring," said Chief Mercer.

The fire chief says even with the new name, residents can still expect the same level of service.

"So they're going to see the same trucks the same people, it's the same community members, so nothing really changed on face value for the community," said Chief Mercer.

The new fire district hopes to be in full operation by September 1st. The district encompasses the rural area around Pierce City in parts of 3 counties plus the city itself.

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