LCRA and Bandera Electric Cooperative representatives present a $25,000 grant to the Medina Volunteer Fire Department for a digital sign and new medical equipment. The grant is part of LCRA’s Community Development Partnership Program. Pictured, from left to right, are: Lauren Salazar, BEC marketing supervisor; Lee Bailey, Medina VFD president; Bill Hetherington, BEC chief executive officer; and Lori A. Berger, LCRA Board member.
BANDERA COUNTY, Texas – The Medina Volunteer Fire Department will purchase a digital sign and new life-saving medical equipment, thanks to a $25,000 grant from BEC and the Lower Colorado River Authority.
The Community Development Partnership Program grant, along with $6,500 in matching funds, will allow for the installation of a digital sign for emergency alerts and the purchase of three automated external defibrillators and accessories.
“The majority of the grant will go toward an electric digital sign in front of our fire house,” said Lee Bailey, president of the Medina VFD. “It’ll be used for emergency notifications such as burn bans and red flag warnings.”
The sign also will be used for alerts about possible flooding conditions, as well as school announcements or news from non-profit groups.
Bailey said the sign will replace the department’s current notification system – a piece of plywood stationed between two fence posts in front of the station.
“Receiving this grant is huge,” he said. “We’ve wanted a digital sign for years because sometimes people aren’t aware of fire-related notices or they need to be reminded. It will save the fire department from dealing with fires that shouldn’t have been set during burn bans or red flag warnings.”
Medina VFD is one of nine fire departments in Bandera County and has a service area of about 386 square miles. The department also offers mutual aid to Kerr, Kendall, Frio and Medina counties. Most of the department’s calls are for fire and medical help, which includes responding to vehicle and motorcycle crashes.
“In the last eight years, we have made tremendous strides in adding new equipment,” Bailey said. “We run a real tight fiscal policy and are debt free, but our training and membership has gone up and without this grant it would have been a while before we could afford these critical purchases.”
The community grant is one of 25 grants awarded recently through LCRA’s Community Development Partnership Program, which helps volunteer fire departments, local governments, emergency responders and nonprofit organizations fund capital improvement projects in LCRA’s wholesale electric, water and transmission service areas. The program is part of LCRA’s effort to give back to the communities it serves. Bandera Electric Cooperative is one of LCRA’s wholesale electric customers and is a partner in the grant program. Applications for the next round of grants will be accepted in July. More information is available at lcra.org/cdpp.