Officials from Western Fire Department, a nonprofit company in Pinal County, are interested in providing fire coverage to the Gilbert county islands that will be losing Rural/Metro Fire Department services July 1.
County island residents say they’ve been in communication with the company since January in hopes of contracting a private company to provide fire services.
However, the nullification this week of a county island fire board could make it difficult to work out any arrangements, county island residents said.
Donna Davis, who had been named to the new fire board, said working with the department may depend on a successful appeal of the decision made by Maricopa County Superior Court Judge Colin Campbell on Wednesday.
The judge ruled in a lawsuit filed by Gilbert that the law creating the fire district is unconstitutional.
Western’s fire chief, James Krempasky, said it’s unclear if an arrangement can be made without the law, but the district is interested in offering help.
Lead firefighter Lou Mirabelli said if Gilbert islanders were to choose Western, it would mean residents could not expect the same level of service as that of the Gilbert Fire Department.
The company now services 800 square miles of Pinal County west of Casa Grande, Mirabelli said. At times it can take 45 minutes to reach a fire, he said, but the department is trying to provide service where there is none.