Town of Princeton
Facilities Steering Committee
October 1, 2018
To: Residents of Princeton
From: Facilities Steering Committee, Phase II
The Selectboard established the Facilities Steering Committee, Phase II, to make recommendations, share information with voters and assist in the securing of funding for the development of plans and construction documents for a new public safety building to be built at the Princeton Center School site. We will regularly use a Question and Answer format to answer your questions and share the information we have learned.
- Are there any grants available?
There are no grants available for public safety buildings that we are aware of. There are grants for fire and police equipment which we are actively pursuing. The fire department is currently pursuing a grant for washers and dryers to clean and decontaminate fire clothing. If received, this equipment will be transferred to the new public safety building.
- Why can’t the State pay for this?
The State Legislature recently passed and the Governor signed a bond bill that included funding for the construction of a public safety building in Princeton. However, Princeton was one of many towns to be named on the bond bill and not every town named will get the funding. Based on our experience with bond bills for road funding, having a “shovel ready” or fully designed project places you near the top of the list for consideration. This is our goal.
- Most emergency calls are for the ambulance. Can we downsize the fire department? Could we have a smaller facility?
For 2018, we have over 186 fire calls and are now up to 300 ambulance calls. Downsizing is not an option. Calls for Service in 2017:
- 139 Fire Calls = 40 % (two significant structure fires)
- 211 EMS Calls = 60 %
- 36 Members, 16 Live in Princeton, 20 come from other towns
- Members performed 18 Public Education programs
- Inspectors performed over 250 Inspections for Smoke and CO Alarms, Propane installations, Oil burner and Oil tank installations as well as mandatory fire safety inspections
- Can we regionalize and save money (fire and/or police)? If we regionalize, do we need a new building?
Fire and police dispatch have been regionalized. Regionalization of specific pieces of fire equipment has been and will continue to be considered. Further regionalization of the fire department does not change the requirement for a fire station to be within 5 miles of a residence. Homes outside of a five-mile distance would have dramatic increases in their homeowner’s insurance.
Currently no police department is regionalized. However, Princeton is part of a regional mutual aid group where police from neighboring towns will help each other. The state police are available for assistance but these arrangements are only to supplement the Princeton police as needed. There would be a cost for further utilization of the state police.
There is a new medical and regional lock-up facility being built in West Boylston that will be run by the Sheriff’s Department. It is possible that Princeton can utilize the facility for overnight prisoner occupancy; however, the regulations and costs have yet to be determined.
For more information, please go to:
If you have questions that you would like answered, please email:
Facilities Steering Committee, Phase II, members:
Richard Chase, Chair
Larry Todd, Clerk
Chief John Bennett, representing the fire department