Cortez Fire Dept. to hire its first full-time firefighters | News
The Cortez Fire Department is about to see some big changes after a much needed federal grant.
Justin Lindsay, 25, grew up at the Cortez fire station.
“My father was the last volunteer fire chief they had," said Lindsay.
So it seemed only natural he would become a fire fighter. “It's pretty much in my blood. I got it from my dad."
But he can only work part-time.
Cortez fire chief Jeff Vandevoorde said the department has been around for 100 years.
The only fire fighters have been part-time or volunteer.
“There's never been any full-time fire fighters at all here in Cortez," he said.
But all that is about to change. The fire department was just awarded a FEMA grant.
“Which allows us to hire six full time people. It will be the first six full-time fire fighters in Cortez,” he said.
The grant is worth over half-a-million dollars.
While hundreds of fire departments apply every year, only 10 percent actually receive the award.
"It's gonna increase our response times and it's also gonna help us immensely with dual calls," said the chief.
The fire department will hire internally first.
Lindsay said he has already applied.
The fire chief said they will start accepting outside applications after the first round of testing.
For more information contact the Cortez Fire Department at (970) 565-3157.