Richard D. L. Fulton
(6/15) Several dozen local and county officials and
fire and ambulance personnel attended the June 3 groundbreaking ceremony for
the new Emmitsburg Volunteer Ambulance Company building to be built on Creamery
Speaking on behalf of EVAC were President Joseph Pelkey
and Chief Rick Sharer. Town commissioners attending were board President
Christopher V. Staiger and commissioners Joyce A. Rosensteel and Glenn
Included among the speakers were county commissioner
Michael L. Cady, who presented the ambulance company with a certificate of
congratulations, signed by all of the county commissioners. Among the attendees
were also county commissioner John R. Lovell Jr. and Walter F. Murray, director
of the Frederick County Fire and Rescue Division.
Two-year effort yields results
In presenting the certificate, Cady described the
volunteer services as "the heart and soul of every community." Staiger said
that the ambulance company has given a lot back to the community "beyond that
you give to lifesaving emergencies."
Sharer defined the groundbreaking as "another milestone
in our history," and described the theme of the event as "progress and
The proposed 25,895 square foot, two-story EVAC
structure will be located on a 4.01-acre tract on Creamery Road, purchased in
2004 for $130,000 from Sheridan "Dan" and Greg Reaver of Emmitsburg Glass Co.
Pelkey previously told The Dispatch the nearly $2 million price tag does not
include the cost of the land.
The fate of the present ambulance headquarters on
county land on South Seton remains uncertain. Under the terms of the lease
between EVAC and the county, the building, which was constructed by the
ambulance company, would become county property.
The county is presently reviewing a request from EVAC
to permit the company to sell the building to a farmer or business that would
then remove it. EVAC would like to use that money as partial payment on the new
The ambulance company hopes the new building will be
completed by early 2007.
Planned structure will have multiple uses
According to plans filed with the town, the building's
first floor will be 70 feet by 211 feet; while the second floor will be 60 feet
by 70 feet. The second floor will be devoted to housing career and volunteer
ambulance personnel; and the first floor will include the ambulance bay and a
social hall, space for bingo and other fundraising activities, complete with
kitchen facilities and bathrooms to serve special events. The building will
also serve be used for emergency disaster relief.
Fees for ambulance services, from social hall rentals,
and from ambulance-held events, will continue to enhance emergency operations,
and will help the company pay for the building.
In order to finance the new building, the ambulance
company must take out a $1.9 million loan. The annual payback on the loan,
based on non-profit status, would be $112,000, according to Pelkey.
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