Squad merger is complete

Published 2:36 pm Wednesday, July 12, 2017

The merge between the Kenbridge Emergency Squad (KES) and Victoria Fire and Rescue (VFR) is complete, according to Victoria Fire Chief Rodney Newton.

The merge was first approved by the Lunenburg County Board of Supervisors in February after concerns arose that KES struggled to answer calls due to dwindling funds and membership.

“Yes it is complete,” Newton said in an email to The Dispatch. Newton also serves as the town manager of Victoria.

Newton confirmed that operations will continue out of both the KES and VFR stations.

Newton said earlier that legal proceedings had to take place to accommodate the merge.

He confirmed Monday that the proceedings had

been completed.

Board members who approved the merge at a Feb. 21 round table meeting at the KES station were District Seven Supervisor Robert Zava, District One Supervisor Wayne T. Hoover, Chairman and District Four Supervisor Charles R. Slayton and District Three Supervisor Frank Bacon.

District Five Supervisor Edward Pennington and District Six Supervisor Alvester Edmonds voted in opposition.

The merge, according to officials, will allow members of VFR to provide continued emergency medical training to KES members.

During the February roundtable, a possible merge with KES and Kenbridge Fire Department was discussed, but KES members cited personal conflicts between the two departments as a reason the merge would not be beneficial.

KES member Chris Craft said during the meeting a long term solution would be needed to serve the Kenbridge community.

“We have done everything we can in the last three years. We’ve written our bylaws trying to make it a little easier because there’s a lot of personal conflict — people that just can’t play nice in the sandbox with others …,” Craft said.

“I think the big picture is we’re here for the citizens of the county and we need to do what’s best for them,” he said. “We need a long-term fix, not a short-term fix. That way, we don’t have to have this conversation again.”

“As all of you know we have been struggling for a long time,” said Glenda Conner, then-chairman of KES. “We have asked for help from entities here in town and have not received them. Victoria has been there for us every time we have asked for help or every time we have needed help.”