Journal Express, Knoxville, IA

January 17, 2013

Fire grant sought

Steve Woodhouse

Knoxville —  

Though he's not officially on the job yet, incoming Knoxville Fire Chief Nick Bonstell is already doing his part to help out the City of Knoxville.

Bonstell, according to City Manager Harold Stewart, has been writing a grant to the Federal Emergency Management Agency (FEMA) for a project, with the cooperation of property owners, would supply approximately 6,000 smoke detectors to the community. If the grant is awarded, cost of this project, which also includes funding for firefighters to train residents and for technology, would be $8,600 to the City of Knoxville.

Property owners would not be forced to take any of the free smoke detectors. They would be available to those who want them and would like the Fire Department's assistance with them. 

“Our goal with that program...would be to fund prevention,” Stewart said. 

Members of the Knoxville City Council reportedly believe this is a great idea. The City will learn by June whether or not it will be awarded the grant. 

As for Bonstell, Friday, Jan. 18, is his last with the Grand Rapids, Mich., Fire Department. His official first day on the job for Knoxville is scheduled to be Monday, Feb. 11. 

“There's a lot he's doing for the community,” Stewart said of Bonstell.