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Bluebonnet, LCRA award $25,000 grant to South Lee County VFD

0524
 2021


Pictured, from left to right, are: Ronald Zoch, South Lee VFD secretary; Chris Becker, South Lee VFD president; Mark Johnson, Bluebonnet community representative; Mason Becker, South Lee VFD drill captain #2; Lori A. Berger, LCRA board member; and Russell Jurk, Bluebonnet Board member.

The South Lee County Volunteer Fire Department will repair and update its station’s parking lot, thanks to a $25,000 grant from the Lower Colorado River Authority and Bluebonnet Electric Cooperative.
 
The Community Development Partnership Program grant, along with $20,000 in matching funds, will replace the gravel parking lot with 8 inches of reinforced concrete and add handicapped-accessible parking in the front of the station.
 
“As is, the parking lot has problems with drainage and with water getting into the building when we have heavy rain,” said Ronald Zoch, secretary of South Lee County VFD. “The concrete will fix that problem and it will help us get the equipment in and out of the driveway safely. Our engine holds up to 2,000 gallons of water so the strength of the concrete is needed.”
 
Improvements also will provide easier access for visitors. The station is used as a community center by several groups, including 4-H, Texas Wendish Heritage Society, Lutheran Adult Fellowship and the Lee County Fire Fighters Association.
 
South Lee County VFD serves a population of about 1,200 in Lee County, and has mutual aid agreements with other fire departments in Lee, Bastrop and Fayette counties. The department has 38 members and is equipped with six emergency vehicles. It also has the only brush truck in the county that can perform water rescues.
 
“We’ve wanted to do these upgrades for about two years now and have been looking for funding to help,” Zoch said. “So, when this grant came through, we were very excited because it provides us with the security to go forward with the project.”
 
The community grant is one of seven grants being awarded by Bluebonnet and the LCRA through LCRA’s Community Development Partnership Program, which helps volunteer fire departments, local governments, emergency responders and nonprofit organizations fund capital improvement projects in LCRA’s wholesale electric, water and transmission 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 is a partner in the grant program.
 
Applications for the next round of grants will be accepted in July. More information is available at lcra.org/cdpp.

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