FILER, Idaho — The Filer Rural Fire District recently unveiled a new station with hopes it will help to better serve the community in the coming years.
Steven Mullen, assistant fire chief for the district, said this new facility has been a dream for them for nearly 30 years.
"It's really hard To put into words," said Mullen. "Ultimately it is just here to help the people."
The fire district is run solely by 28 volunteers, and up until recently they had all trained and operated out of a 10,000-square-foot station.
"The bays were so small it was kind of like threading a needle trying to get the equipment in and out," Mullen said.
The construction of the new 24,000-square-foot location was able to be built Without any extra funds coming from the taxpayer's pocket. Instead, the district saved every dime they could to make it happen.
"We owe nothing on the building," Mullen said. "We are not in debt, we are not in the hole, we broke even."
While saving the taxpayer's money, the station is also currently being used to help feed their community. Every second Tuesday of the month, cars line up outside the new station hoping to get some help with their next meal.
"There is always between 120 to 150 cars, sometimes even more," said Joe Lineberry with the Mobile Food Pantry. "Sometimes you even Have to turn people away at the end when we run out of food."
The new fire station hopes to transition to having full-time staff at some point, but for now, it will be used to more efficiently protect the community from fires, and occasionally help those in need of food.
"It’s a necessity for us," said Mullen. "It’s something we really had to strive for and keep a focus on."