The Nevada Fire Department has always provided the staff to shoot the annual Fourth of July fireworks show. Now this year’s show might be the last for Nevada.
Director of Fire & EMS Ray Reynolds said, “It is costing the fire department more money each year to supplement the fireworks fund that was once collected by citizens of the community.”
The fireworks show originally was a $10,000 show. Steadily the funds have dwindled, with the city of Nevada providing the majority of funding. As the show got smaller, the minimum show the fire department agreed to shoot was $8,500. The department said — anything less than $8,500 and the community starts to express disappointment in the length of the show.
The remaining shortfalls have been made up annually by the volunteer firefighters.
Reynolds said, “I’m not sure the people who volunteer a lot of their time already should be tasked with fundraising for the town’s fireworks. People donate to the fire department, expecting them to use the funds to purchase rescue equipment or pay for medical training. We do not want people to feel like their donation was shot off in the sky.”
Donation-wise, the department has received a $100 check specifically for fireworks this year. Along with that donation, the firefighters agreed to spend $1,000, while the city of Nevada paid the remaining $7,500.
“As cities try to deal with lower revenue as a result of recent legislation and property tax roll-back decisions at the state, it is harder to fund the required obligations of the city, let alone this extra expenditure,” Reynolds said. “I can buy five sets of bunker gear to protect our firefighters for the amount of money expended during the fireworks show.”
It’s time for the community or several big sponsors to come forward if fireworks are to continue in Nevada.
Reynolds said the fire department has the equipment and certifications to continue to shoot the show if that is what the community wants and funds.