The Cosumnes Community Services District (CSD) board on Nov. 4 approved the business and operations plans for Cosumnes Fire Station 77.
This Poppy Ridge Road facility will be built in Elk Grove’s growing region that includes the Laguna Ridge and Madeira communities as well as the Del Webb senior community and the site for Wilton Rancheria’s planned casino-resort.
Cosumnes Fire officials are naming the station after Elk Grove’s first fire chief, J.D. “Dell” Cann, and their staff plans to begin operating there in early 2022. The station’s construction cost is estimated to be $10.8 million and will be operated by 15 new employees from the fire department’s academy.
Station 77 has been planned for the past 15 years, but the project was put on hold during the late 2000s recession. The same situation impacted the proposed recreation center for Morse Community Park, which had its business and operations plan also approved by the CSD board on Nov. 4.
“The irony is both of these projects that we are bringing before you this evening are projects that have been in work for a considerable amount of time,” Cosumnes Fire Chief Mike McLaughlin told the CSD board.
He presented the 9,000-square foot station’s conceptual plan that was based on ideas from a committee of several Cosumnes fire captains as well as a fire battalion chief. The fire staff returned to the fire station project five years ago when communities near the project site began growing again.
McLaughlin detailed the need or the new station when he reported that Elk Grove experienced a 54% rise in emergency incidents in the past decade. He also showed a map of the city where firefighters can arrive at emergency sites in less than four minutes. Large gaps were displayed in the Laguna Ridge area. McLaughlin noted that the crews from nearby Station 71 at Elk Grove Boulevard are impacted by traffic on that street and Highway 99 when they respond to emergencies in Station 77’s area.
The CSD staff estimated that Station 77’s annual operations cost will be $3 million - $2.1 million of that cost will come from the salaries and benefits of 15 employees. Other anticipated costs include $675,000 in overtime expenses and retiree health benefits, and $131,000 in station materials and supplies.
Nitish Sharma, the CSD’s chief administrative officer, reported that the district received $7.2 million in Staffing for Adequate Fire and Emergency Response (SAFER) grants from the federal government to hire 15 new firefighters. He said that $5.4 million of these grand funds will support the Station 77 staff for the first three years.
The CSD staff also expects $1 million in ongoing revenues from ambulance services and the future station’s staff will use a $500,000 cost savings plan in their use of services and supplies.
As for the building’s construction, CSD officials said that the project will be mainly funded by fire impact fees collected by the district.
In his board presentation, McLaughlin said that Station 77’s engine and medic crews will graudate from the fire academy and then temporarily work at other Cosumnes fire stations before their home station opens.
Station 77 is one of the CSD’s projects that will be in a pilot program that employs apprentices provided by the labor organization Sacramento-Sierra Building and Construction Trades Council. The contractor that wins the construction bid must work with the apprentices, as required by the agreement approved by the CSD board last month.
Station 77 will be built at 8350 Poppy Ridge Road, near Cosumnes River College’s Elk Grove Center.