LCRA, Bluebonnet award grant to Fayettevile VFD for new helipad


LCRA and Bluebonnet Electric Cooperative representatives present a $25,000 grant to the Fayetteville Volunteer Fire Department for a new emergency helipad. The grant is part of LCRA’s Community Development Partnership Program. Pictured, from left to right, are: Kate Holman, LCRA Regional Affairs representative; Stephen Cushing, former Fayetteville mayor; Rodney Sladek, assistant fire chief; Mark Johnson, Bluebonnet community development representative; Lori A. Berger, LCRA Board member; Ronnie Pflughaupt, Fayetteville city council member; Carl Marino, Fayetteville mayor; Luke Sternadel, Fayette County commissioner; and Kyle Merten, Bluebonnet community development representative.

The Fayetteville Volunteer Fire Department will soon begin construction on a helipad that will significantly reduce patient transport time during medical emergencies, thanks to a $25,000 community development grant from the Lower Colorado River Authority and Bluebonnet Electric Cooperative.

The grant, along with matching funds from the City of Fayetteville and the VFD, will help the fire department eliminate the time spent looking for landing sites and conveying location information to helicopter crews and first responders. The time saved coordinating resources could be critical for patients.
Fayette County has no Level I trauma centers. People needing that level of emergency care must be transported by helicopter to Austin or Houston.

“The City of Fayetteville has an aging population and our volunteer fire department assists with about one medical transport a month,” said former Fayetteville Mayor Stephen Cushing. “Having a safe, secure landing spot for helicopters is a priority for our community.”

The new helipad will be constructed in a field near Fayetteville City Hall this summer.

“LCRA helped the New Ulm VFD construct a similar helipad last year and I’ve seen first-hand how it has helped that community,” Cushing said. “With a helipad of our own, I know we will feel safer and more capable when responding to medical emergencies.”

The community grant is one of a number of grants recently awarded through LCRA’s Community Development Partnership Program, which provides economic development and community assistance grants to cities, counties, volunteer fire departments, regional development councils and other nonprofit organizations in LCRA’s wholesale electric and water service areas. The program is part of LCRA’s effort to give back to the communities it serves. Bluebonnet Electric Cooperative is one of LCRA’s wholesale electric customers and a partner in the grant program.

Applications for the next round of grants will be accepted July 1-31. More information is available at


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