The Massachusetts House of Representatives has approved a $50,000 appropriation for Braintree to help renovate the East Braintree fire station, legislators announced this week.
According to a release, the House budget for fiscal 2013, which begins July 1, provides the last remaining amount for the town to renovate the station, which has been a long time coming.
The budget still requires approval by the Senate and the governor before being finalized.
The fire station, which opened in 1941, is the second-oldest of fire stations in Braintree, and lacks many of the space requirements needed for modern day equipment.
Renovations will allow the station to house a ladder truck, two fire engines, and equipment to address an oil spill in the Fore River.
“This money from the state coupled with the funds already set aside by the town will finally allow us to renovate the East Braintree Fire Station in order to house a new ladder truck,” said State Representative Mark Cusack, a Braintree Democrat. “This will be the first time we have been able to house a ladder truck in last Braintree in over ten years, which will increase the safety of all residents and businesses in the area.”
According to Peter Morin, chief of operations and staff for Braintree, the town has already accrued $250,000 through numerous capital appropriations to carry out a renovation.
With the recently approved acquisition of a ladder truck for East Braintree, the necessity to upgrade the facilities to house the truck became paramount.
“It’s been a priority for the Mayor and [others] before that to get a ladder truck to ensure that it will service East Braintree,'' Morin said. "That need is being met, so the modifications to the firehouse will also be made.”
The fire truck is being funded by the town and money from a settlement between the Environmental Protection Agency and the hazardous-waste cleanup company Clean Harbors. The EPA had charged Clean Harbors with improperly storing waste at its Braintree site.
Morin added that even if the state funding fell through, the renovation will get done.
“We’ll just get it done either way -- within our own resources if we have to, but it will get done. But the state aid is welcome assistance and relief from financial pressure,” Morin said.
The town hopes to start work on the design in the coming weeks and have the renovations finished by next year.
“Hopefully, it will be complete when that engine arrives,” Morin said.