I’d like to volunteer - what do I need to do?
We are always looking for volunteers to help out. Not all volunteers have to be firefighters. If you have a special skill that you think we can use, please contact us. Are you good at fund-raising, grant-writing, vehicle or small-engine mechanics, public engagement, or construction/handyman work? This is all done by firefighters, in addition to training, incident response, and their daily lives. Check the event calendar, and come introduce yourself at one of our monthly board meetings. They're not as boring as it sounds, and the community is more than encouraged to attend. We really do care about your input!
Where is the closest fire station located?
We have two locations. Our main fire station is Station 1, which is located at 212 Clear Creek Road, about a mile past where the pavement ends. Station 2 is located in the Forest Highlands subdivision at 9 Highland Drive. Please note that the fire stations are not staffed. The volunteers respond from their homes, and proceed to the nearest appropriate fire station to activate the apparatus.
why would you ever show up to a fire without a fire truck?
That sounds ridiculous, doesn't it? Sometimes, your neighbor that's a firefighter is closer to you than to a fire station. Believe me, someone is on their way to go get a fire truck when it's needed. The advantage to getting a firefighter on-scene without a truck, is that firefighter becomes the eyes and ears with a two-way radio for the rest of the responders that are on their way. This responder can then provide valuable information, such as best access route, hazards along the way, road conditions, and what additional resources are needed.
How do I report a fire? Does 9-1-1 work in the mountains?
Yes, dial 9-1-1 for any emergency! Your landline will ring to Boise County Dispatch. If you are on wifi calling on your cell phone, make sure your E-911 service is mapped correctly. You may still want to explain to dispatch that you are in the Clear Creek area of Boise County in case you have been routed to another dispatch center. Any location information that you can provide dispatch will be helpful, and get responders to you faster.
What kind of donated items could the fire department use?
We go through cases of bottled water and Gatorade on fires, training, and other incidents, so that's always a hit. Raffle/auction items for our annual community gatherings are appreciated. Envelopes and paper for mailers (and humans to stuff them!) are useful too.
Are my donations and subscription payments tax-deductible?
Yes. We are a 503(c)(3) non-profit charitable organization.
If I don't pay my subscription, does that mean you won't respond?
No. We do this as a community service. When we respond to an incident, we don't even know who has paid and who hasn't. If you don't pay the subscription, the only thing that means is that we can bill you and/or your insurance company in accordance with Idaho state law.
Do you have any paid fire fighters?
No. Not a single one of our volunteers, including the chief, are paid for our services. Many of us have full-time jobs, in addition to training and responding. We each may get a free t-shirt every year or two though.
Don't some of my property taxes go toward the fire department?
No. We are not a taxing district. This has been attempted in the past, but the community turned it down. There are advantages and disadvantages to being a taxing district, but that's for another forum.
Why isn't there a fundraiser anymore?
Mostly, due to the lack of a good accessible location in the community to hold a mass-gathering. With rising costs, the amount brought in wasn't sufficient to pay the bills the last few years. Also, most of the planning and work was done by the firefighters and their families themselves, in addition to their full-time jobs, and training, and chores, and other things.
How is the subscription participation? Is it enough?
Participation varies from year-to-year, but it's been running just under 33%. In the past, it had been paying the bills and providing for some advancements here-and-there, but costs are increasing. Add to that an unexpected truck repair or two, and we're over-budget and are cutting into some essentials. We could use your help in encouraging your neighbors to participate in this highly beneficial program.
Funding goes to utilities, insurance, training, vehicle/equipment repairs and maintenance, fuel, building repairs and maintenance, personal protective equipment (PPE), communications equipment, and more. Believe it or not, we actually try to spend as little as we can, and sometimes even buy parts and materials out of our own pockets. We do much of the vehicle repairs ourselves, and we have even had neighbors that are gracious enough to help us out with some of the more complex repairs. The best way to get a good idea of how much is spent and where is to attend a monthly board meeting.
I want to help out. What is the best way to plug-in?
We'd love your help! The best way to plug-in is to show up to the monthly board meetings. (they aren't as boring as they sound!) We cover all of the things going on with the department: equipment and personnel status, upcoming events, needs and wants, future planning, and more.