Firefighters move in to Carbondale Station #2 in spite of AG acc - KFVS12 News & Weather Cape Girardeau, Carbondale, Poplar Bluff

Firefighters move in to Carbondale Station #2 in spite of AG accessibility complaint

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The department's Dalmatian dog statue stands guard at the front door. The department's Dalmatian dog statue stands guard at the front door.
CARBONDALE, IL (KFVS) - Firefighters are all settled into their new home away from home inside Carbondale’s Fire Station Two, but the Illinois Attorney General’s office says construction on the building isn't done yet.

The Attorney General sent the City of Carbondale a letter stating the new fire station had to be entirely handicapped accessible. City Manager Kevin Baity says while public areas of the building were built to be 100 percent accessible, firefighter living quarters were considered private and were not built with accessibility in mind.

The city wrestled with whether to wait until all required changes were made or move in and let the changes happen around the working firefighters.

In the end, Baity says it didn’t make financial sense to keep the new and old stations running when only one of them was serving the public.

“It was costing us anywhere from $2,000 to $2,500 a month to have both stations functioning,
 Baity said. “We felt it was time to move into the other one. Having enough done by the contractor, we just went ahead and moved in.”

The city will send a response letter to the Attorney General this week along with architectural plans and cost estimates for work required to make the building fully accessible.

The city will make any necessary alterations to the building once the Attorney General responds to the letter.

In the meantime, Baity says the city council will discuss whether or not to sell the old fire station on Oakland Street.

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