WEST ALEXANDRIA — In the Feb. 17 edition of The Register-Herald, an article entitled “W. Alex discusses unauthorized purchases” noted Fire Chief Jeff Shafer purchased a fire truck with the fire association’s money and attempted to place it on the village’s insurance policy.
To clarify, the West Alexandria Fire Association President Jeff Hickey explained the WAFA is a nonprofit organization and that purchase was made without tax payer money. Further, the purchase of a vehicle is voted on by the association, with the purchase actually being spearheaded by Association President (and Assistant Fire Chief) Jeff Hickey.
The issue however, as it stated in the article, was not with the purchase of the vehicle, but with the association placing the vehicle on the village’s insurance policy without the knowledge of the village office.
Placing vehicles on the village’s insurance policy is common practice for the WA Fire Association, though, according to Hickey.
“Since we’re our own entity, we’ve never gone through the village. We’ve always just told them that we bought something, they insure it. This has never been an issue,” he said last week.
Hickey said the association owns several vehicles, which are all in the association’s name, and the village pays for the maintenance and the insurance. According to Hickey, what the association did was no different than what they’ve done for the past 25 years.