Funding options presented for Cool Branch Volunteer Fire Department

Southside Virginia News

PENHOOK, Va. (WFXR) — Despite most calls for the Cool Branch Volunteer Fire Department taking crews out of Pittsylvania County and into Franklin County, Franklin only provided about 16% of government funding over the last decade. That may change soon.

A resolution passed Tuesday by the Pittsylvania County Board of Supervisors provides three options to address the funding disparity between the counties. The options include:

  • Adjust the first due area for Cool Branch and require Franklin County to pay for each service call within its borders.
  • Require Franklin County to contribute $40,000 annually for fire and rescue services and reimburse Pittsylvania County for 50% of all future capital contributions to Cool Branch Fire and Rescue agencies.
  • Incorporate a section of Franklin County north of Old Mountain Road into Pittsylvania County in exchange for Pittsylvania providing 24/7 paid EMS coverage.

“We are committed to providing timely and effective emergency services for our citizens and the entire Penhook community,” said Pittsylvania County Administrator David Smitherman. “We have offered Franklin County several cost-sharing possibilities, each of which is more fair than the current arrangement.”

Franklin County has until Dec. 1 to decide which option it will agree to.

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