DANVILLE, Ky. (LEX 18) — This is the second to last Friday of the unofficial summer season, yet Governor Andy Beshear wasn’t treating it casually, nor was he looking to duck out of the office early.
Gov. Beshear had a busy morning in Boyle County before heading back to Frankfort where he was expecting to be handed a bill that will help the thousands of eastern Kentuckians who lost everything in the flood one month ago. Legislators were scheduled to end a special session by passing House Bill 1 and Senate Bill 1, which will add $212 million in emergency relief funding to the region.
“This was an effort that wasn’t bipartisan, it was non-partisan. Everyone wanting to do the right thing,” Governor Beshear said.
Before taking care of that line of business, the governor was in Danville, arriving first at fiscal court where he’d discuss some new infrastructure plans for the area, then it was on to the newly minted firehouse, which was recently completed.
“This is phenomenal,” the governor gushed, following his speech to a large crowd of community members. “It is exactly what these firefighters deserve,” he continued.
The $6.5 million facility is state-of-the-art and will allow for better response times, in addition to improving the living and working conditions for department members.
“Our old house had some deterioration and was actually past its life of use, so the city deemed it necessary,” said Chief Doug Simpson.
There’s also a human element to this as many of these firefighters are required to live in the house for a few nights each week.
“We want them to be able to relax, feel like it’s their home, and have some type of a decompression,” Chief Simpson added.
The men and women of this department, despite being hundreds of miles away from the devastation from the tornadoes in western Kentucky and flooding in eastern Kentucky, answered those calls too.
“I am so proud to say the Danville Fire Department was pivotal to the rescue efforts, not only in the east but in the west,” Mr. Beshear said.
Now, in the center of Danville, they have a new 20,000-square-foot facility to call home. It was funded entirely by the city, and took two years to build.
“We’re really excited to have this dedication today to the station,” Chief Simpson said.