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Fire departments still have burning need for funds

The county’s seven volunteer fire departments provide a basic service for residents who live outside McMinnville city limits. The county provides $3,000 in annual funding to each department. Volunteer firefighters are shown battling a house fire near Viola earlier this year.

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Harrison Ferry Volunteer Fire Department has an operational firetruck again after going nearly a month without one. Fire Chief Lynn Curtis says he paid for the repairs out of his own pocket because the fire department is broke. He will reimburse himself when $3,000 in county funding is distributed this summer. Such financial woes aren’t unique to Harrison Ferry, one of seven volunteer fire departments in the county. At Collins River Fire Department, Chief David Milstead says his department is barely surviving too.

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