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Belmont fire chief to retire in April

Fire truck fix proving costly

February 24, 2010
BELMONT — Effective April 16, Fire Chief Jim Davis will retire from the Belmont Fire Department after 26 years of service.

Davis submitted his letter of resignation to the Board of Selectmen Monday night. He has been fire chief for three years.

Selectman Jon Pike, acting as chair in the absence of Ron Cormier, said that although he and Davis "haven't always seen eye to eye," he has been a valuable asset to the town.

"It's gonna take some doing to replace you," Pike said.

Selectman David Morse asked whether the April 16 date was etched in stone. Davis said his official retirement date is May 1, and though he would like to take his family on vacation, he would consider staying on until then if the town is unable to find a qualified chief.

Davis said he has enjoyed working for the town.

"I appreciate the opportunity you've given me," Davis said.

The board accepted the resignation with regret.

In other fire department news, the tanker that Davis told selectmen needed "rather significant work" earlier this month looks like it could cost more than the $10-15,000 he had estimated.

Firefighter Tom Murphy told the board earlier this month that during a routine oil change, Winnipesaukee Truck Service had found metal in the oil pan and sent out samples to find the contaminants. The report came back that they were showing high levels of antifreeze.

Pike said Monday that he had been communicating with Mack Motors, and though he's still waiting on a final estimate, he expects that "it's probably going to end up somewhere in the $20,000 range."

"We're gonna end up paying to fix our fire truck," Pike said. "However, there may be some money coming back to us based on a maintenance schedule (set up by Mack)."

Pike suggested that the board set up a meeting with Mack and the fire department's mechanics, as well as Murphy, for the March 8 selectmen meeting. He stressed that the work needs to be done quickly so the truck can be put back on the road.

Martin Lord & Osman
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