2022 Boot Drive
Your fire department is struggling financially. Providing fire protection and ambulance service is expensive. With inflation and public funding that hasn’t increased in decades, now more than ever, we need your help!
For two decades, we were able to cover printing, envelopes, and postage with our annual corporate sponsor. This year, we did not receive that sponsorship. Instead, we will be relying on social media, word of mouth, and our website to get out the word. There will NOT be a mailer.
We will be taking donations by mail or through our Paypal account: Donate Here
You do NOT need a Paypal account to donate electronically.
Make Checks Payable: Fire Dept. of Liberty Township, PO Box 160, Clayton, IN 46118
THANK YOU FOR YOUR SUPPORT!
More about our situation:
The Fire Department of Liberty Township (FDLT) was formed on January 1, 2000, merging the Volunteer Fire Departments in Clayton, Cartersburg and Belleville. In 2007, the Hazelwood Volunteer Fire Department was added.
Over the last 22 years, the demand for service has exploded. Commercial and residential development within our area coupled with the increase in traffic on Interstate 70, US 40, and State Road 39 have stretched our capabilities.
Financial and recruitment struggles plague the department. Since our inception, the funding we receive has been stagnant. All the while, costs continue to rise. In addition, there are roughly 80% less volunteers than in previous years. Rising costs and demand with diminishing resources have led us to where we are now.
Over the years we have taken several dramatic steps to deal with the strained resources and keep the doors open. We have downsized, eliminating more than half the department vehicles (fire trucks, etc.). We closed two of the four original firehouses. Recently, we had to give up our Advanced Life Support Paramedic service due to cost of equipment, supplies and staffing.
FDLT is recognized by the state and federal government as a 501(c)(3) non-profit corporation. Our budget includes: contracts for service, ambulance billing, grants, and donations. Contracts for service are with the Liberty Township Trustee and the Town of Clayton.
On average, we respond to nearly 800 emergency calls each year. This number doesn’t account for the dozens of calls for inspection, prevention, and public education services. This cumulative demand generates countless hours of work that cannot be completed by the current, depleted staff. Effective operation requires continuous training, administration, meetings, maintenance (vehicle, equipment, and building) and just simple day to day tasks generated by the sheer volume of activity. This can strain even the most dedicated volunteers. We struggle to provide the basics: fire protection, (EMS) Emergency Medical Service, ambulance transport, rescue and prevention services.
As we have for many years, we supplement our volunteers with paid, part-time staff. Because of competition for workers, we have struggled to find and keep qualified staff at the rate we can afford to pay. With our manpower and financial difficulties, we rely heavily on mutual aid from neighboring communities. This cannot continue without a reciprocation of service or compensation for the service our neighbors provide. In short, something must change.
We are supported by contracts for service, ambulance billing, grants, and donations. The contracts provide more than 75% of our funding.
The newly elected Liberty Township Trustee has plans to alleviate the deficit we have in Fire and EMS service in our community. We are excited about this change and look forward to being able to provide better service to the community.
Whatever the solution becomes, it will take years to implement. In the meantime, what can you do?
1. Tell the Liberty Township Trustee & the Clayton Town Council that you support better Fire and EMS service provided locally.
2. Donate money. Anything helps.
3. Donate time as a Firefighter/EMT or train with us to become a first responder.
We were extremely busy in August and September. As you can imagine, with inflation and high fuel costs, this increased demand for service is straining our budget. All things considered, our members have been making the most of this challenging situation.
From January 1st through September 30th, we responded to 525 emergency calls.
339 (EMS) Emergency Medical Service (includes all medical emergencies and rescues)
155 Other calls - These include calls for assistance, investigations, fire alarms and misc. calls.
407 of these incidents were in unincorporated Liberty Township (About 10% to the warehouse district.)
58 responses in the Town of Clayton
60 responses to assist other communities
These statistics reflect a 7% increase from the same time in 2021. We expect to end 2022 with over 700 responses.
As a reminder we accept tax deductible donations year round. We are a 501(c)3 Non-for-profit organization. If you feel inclined, you can send your check to Fire Dept. of Liberty Township, 111 East Kentucky, Clayton, IN 46118. Thanks for your support.
The Fire Department of Liberty Township (FDLT) was assigned the impossible task of explaining all aspects of this situation in a 20-minute presentation. This document is intended to do three things: 1. Clarify information presented during the public hearings. 2. Add to the information that was presented. 3.Clear up some of the key misconceptions.
The core of the matter seems to be getting lost in a cloud of misunderstandings. The following key points describe the principal reasons for the need and the proposed solution:
- The problem has been ongoing for decades. The warehouses are NOT the primary reason we are here. All the key issues existed before the first warehouse opened.
- The Liberty Township property tax rate for “Firefighting/Fire” has dropped 78% in the last 22 years. Source: Hendricks County website, Auditors Office. Years compared 2000 & 2022.
- FDLT has been asked to do more with less each year. This is not an exaggeration.
- FDLT has downsized and been very innovative. Otherwise, it wouldn’t still exist with decreasing resources and increasing demand.
- The citizens of Liberty Township have depended on an unreasonable amount of free help from Plainfield and other communities. Plainfield has been asking for something to be done since 2007.
- Year after year for 20 years, FDLT has begged for help with these issues.
- Volunteer fire departments all over the country are suffering from a lack of volunteers. The FDLT struggle for volunteers is NOT unique. FDLT just completed a 2-year grant funded recruitment project that had little to no effect.
- NO volunteer fire department (VFD) was designed to do what FDLT does, let alone with less resources. Most VFD’s respond to around 100 fire/EMS calls per year.
- Emergency ambulance service by itself is not profitable. Therefore, emergency ambulance service is nearly always subsidized by the local government. Private ambulance services make money on scheduled transports between facilities. Emergency ambulances sitting and waiting for calls cost money.
- The fire-based EMS model that Hazelwood and Clayton pioneered cross-trains firefighters to staff the ambulance, provide EMS, and fight fires. The benefit is more firefighters when there is a fire. Across the country, this concept has been proven to be the most efficient way to provide Fire and EMS in communities such as ours.
- The people involved in this process have studied this for years. They have looked everywhere for options. No option was dismissed without the proper research and consideration.
- To some degree, Indiana law limits the options. The Fire Territory concept is the fastest growing way communities are providing these services in Indiana.
- By law, the proposal has to include a maximum tax rate. The actual tax rate will be decided after an official budget is adopted. The draft budget that was originally proposed would result in a rate less than the maximum rate in the Fire Territory resolutions. FDLT has applied for 2 grants totaling $4.2 million in federal funding. If FDLT receives the award, this will dramatically improve this entire situation.
Because of no fault of their own, FDLT is failing to provide basic service. A few years ago, the Clayton Town Council and the Liberty Township Trustee realized that something must change. Experts were enlisted to research the problem and propose solutions. FDLT simply provided information. Their solution will not solve all the problems, but it will provide the citizens with the basic services they need most of the time. FDLT is willing to give up control to better serve the citizens.
The Fire Department of Liberty Township (FDLT) was formed on January 1, 2000. It was a cooperative effort of the Cartersburg, Clayton, and Belleville Volunteer Fire Departments. In 2006 the Hazelwood Volunteer Fire Department joined completing the merger of all four volunteer fire departments into one organization. FDLT is primarily a volunteer organization that supplements our volunteers with paid part-time Firefighter / EMT's. FDLT provides Fire, Rescue, EMS, Emergency Ambulance transport, Fire Prevention and Education services to approximately 6,000 citizens of Liberty Township and the Town of Clayton. Included in the 35 square miles that FDLT covers is Interstate 70, State Road 39, US 40, eight million square feet of industrial warehouse facilities, Cascade High School and Middle School complex and Mill Creek East Elementary.
Fire Department of Liberty Township is a 501(c) 3 nonprofit organization that contracts with the Liberty Township Trustee and the Town of Clayton to provide the services.
The Fire Department of Liberty Township is primarily a volunteer organization. We provide Fire, EMS ( Emergency Medical Service) including emergency ambulance transport, rescue, fire prevention and education services. To supplement our volunteers, we use a portion of our funds to pay two Firefighter/EMT's to be on station during the day and some evenings. While we are always accepting VOLUNTEER applications, we do accept interest cards for future Reserve and Part-time positions. If you are interested fill out an interest card here and we will email you an application packet. Part-time FF/EMT Interest Card
Membership Opportunities for almost everyone.
The Fire Department of Liberty Township mission is to protect the lives and property of the citizens, visitors and neighbors of the Town of Clayton and Liberty Township. Protection provided includes services in firefighting, fire prevention, public education, fire investigation, emergency medical care and transport, hazard mitigation, and all forms of rescue . All those services are provided in the most professional manner by highly trained, dedicated and educated members with strong core values.
Safety - The first and most important consideration is the safety of the citizen, visitor, neighbor and responder. The responders take calculated risks to their own safety to save the life of another.
Service - The citizen, visitor and neighbor are our customer. Customers are treated with the respect and the dignity they deserve.
Compassion - Many times, the customer has called us on their worst day. With that in mind, members will always be sympathetic to the customer who called for help.
Honor - Members perform the duties of the mission with integrity, honesty and fairness without the expectation of glory, doing the right thing even when no one is watching.
Dedication - There is an unwavering commitment to faithful execution of all the duties of the mission.
Preparedness - A constant state of mental and physical readiness is imperative. Readiness is accomplished through training, education, physical fitness and the care of our equipment.
Cooperation - Members recognize that the mission cannot be accomplished without the help of others. Members foster close working relationships with community organizations, all levels of government and other public safety agencies.
The Vision of the Fire Department of Liberty Township is to be recognized by all we serve, those who assist us and our members as:
- An organization that provides the highest level of service that is viewed as a benchmark among all public safety service organizations.
- An organization dedicated to the education of the public in order to promote life safety and a high quality of life.
- An organization that is dynamic enough to change with the needs of those we serve.
- An organization that is acknowledged for our strong core values and commitment to our members.
- An organization that is a good steward of the resources received from the taxpayer and contributor.
Open Burning is permitted under certain conditions within the town of Clayton, as permitted by Indiana State Law. The Fire Department of Liberty Township STRONGLY recommends that if burning takes place to use EXTREME CAUTION. The State provides guidelines on open burning that the Fire Department of Liberty Township follows. If you have any questions please feel free to contact the station for more information.
Key Box program for Residential and Businesses.
Ever wonder how Emergency personnel gain access to a residence or business that is locked? Depending on the severity of the situation, forcible entry could be performed or the personnel on location will need to wait for a key holder to arrive with a key. If the situation does require forcible entry, it normally results in damage to a door and its locks or breaking of a window, costing hundreds of dollars in repairs.