Thanksgiving Fire Department To Replace 21 Year Old Fire Truck

Thanksgiving Fire Department Chief Paul Zais (standing) appeared before Johnston County Commissioners during their February meeting to receive permission for a tax exempt loan of up to $600,000 to pay for a new 2017 Pierce Enforcer Fire Engine for the department. Photo

A Johnston County fire department has won approval for a tax exempt loan to purchase a new fire engine.

Chief Paul Zais with the Thanksgiving Fire Department appeared before Johnston County Commissioners at their February 6th meeting to request a loan not to exceed $600,000 for a 2017 Pierce Enforcer Fire Engine.

The fire truck will replace a 1996 truck that was purchased used from a department in Texas.

Chief Zais said the new truck is needed to keep up with growth in the district and the demand for services.

Bids were submitted by three banks for the loan.  They included the Local Government Federal Credit Unit (LGFCU) which submitted a loan rate of 2.75 percent, First Citizens Bank at 2.76% and Four Oaks Bank at 3.04%.

County Finance Director Chad McLamb recommended the department accept the bid with the LGFCU or First Citizens Bank.  The difference in the interest payment would be no more than $20 per year, McLamb said.

Commissioners voted to approve the tax exempt loan from either bank, with the final decision being with the fire department. Chief Zais indicated the Thanksgiving Board of Directors preferred the LGFCU loan because it was lower.

Chairman Jeff Carver abstained from voting on the loan. Carver is employed by First Citizens Bank.