City of Nolanville ends contract with Central Bell County Fire, starts own fire department

Published: Aug. 7, 2023 at 4:21 PM CDT
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NOLANVILLE, Texas (KWTX) - Since 2009 the City of Nolanville has worked with Central Bell County Fire & Rescue to respond to emergencies within city limits. Now the city is officially parting ways and starting their own fire department.

The contract with Central Bell County Fire and Rescue will end in September, and the new Nolanville Fire Department will officially launch on Oct. 1.

The city has already hired its new fire chief and preparations are underway. Chief Robert Cunningham received donations of supplies like helmets, flashlights and life jackets from the Bastrop Fire Department. The neighboring Southwest Bell County Volunteer Fire Department even stepped in to donate one of their emergency SUVs.

”It’s quite the process of getting everything ready,” Chief Cunningham said.

The City of Nolanville is currently under a partnership with Central Bell County Fire & Rescue, which relies on volunteer firefighters. Under the new Nolanville Fire Department, the city will have about 20 paid part-time firefighters plus additional volunteer firefighters.

”The city felt like they needed more control on the fire side, so that they have a better grasp internally on what’s going on with the city itself,” Chief Cunningham said.

Morgan’s Point Resort Fire Department currently operates under the same model called “a combination department.” Public Information Officer Jim Snyder said it works for them.

”Relying on our volunteer firefighters to fill in as needed on the weekends when some of our full-time guys are on vacation or taking PTO is critical,” Snyder said.

The fire station for the new Nolanville Fire Department may operate out of city hall, but the city is also exploring other options.

”Where we’re sitting is my office currently and that’s where we’re building everything,” Chief Cunningham said. “There have been talks about putting more permanent structures here on site and responding from this location.”

The City of Nolanville’s contract with Central Bell County Fire and Rescue won’t get rid of the department. Central Bell County Fire & Rescue still has a contract with Bell County and will continue to respond to calls within county limits.