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St. Helena upgrades fire department staffing to full-time

St. Helena Fire Department

The St. Helena Fire Department's Engine 17 in service during the Glass Fire.

The City of St. Helena is using extra revenue to upgrade its fire department to a full-time model.

The city found itself with a $1.5 million in unallocated revenue thanks in part to $154,864 in unexpected federal coronavirus relief funds, approximately from $200,000 hotel revenues that are outperforming projections, and $443,774 in unexpected property tax revenue under a complex state financing mechanism known as “Excess ERAF.”

The financial breathing room allowed the city to spend $369,708 to change the St. Helena Fire Department to a full-time professional model with the fire station staffed 24 hours a day, which will improve response times and prevent the service gaps that could result under the current model, especially at night.

The Napa Fire Department has put together an educational video parody based on the original Talking Heads' song and video titled “Burning Down the House”. Their version is called "“Don’t Burn Down Your House.”

You can reach Jesse Duarte at 967-6803 or jduarte@sthelenastar.com.

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