County first responders garner CAWACO grants



Holding a facsimile check representing the total amount of CAWACO grants to county first responders – mainly fire/rescue departments – are from the left: Allgood fire department clerk/treasurer Teresa Coin, Rosa fire department assistant chief Shane Hobson, and District 34 Rep. David Standridge. Standridge, along with District 11 House colleague Rep. Randall Shedd, seen between Hobson and Standridge in the back row, helped process the grants and presented the check to the recipients.

The check is for $23,500, approximating the $23,468.95 actually awarded to five departmental entities by CAWACO. Rosa Fire and Rescue received $3,677.95 for firefighter training “Better Training Leads to Better Care.” Susan Moore Fire and Rescue got $5,000 for an emergency air bag. Allgood Fire and Rescue got $5,000 for new turnout gear. The Oneonta Department of Public Safety got $9,791 split between the police and fire departments to buy body cameras for police officers and thermal imaging cameras for the fire department (to determine if there are individuals remaining inside buildings engulfed in smoke and darkness.)

Others in the photo are, first row from left: Oneonta police chief Charles Clifton, Coin, Hobson, Standridge, Allgood fire chief Scott Payne, and Drayton Cosby, representing CAWACO. Back row from left: Oneonta fire chief Kenneth Booth, Oneonta city manager Ed Lowe, Blount County Emergency Management director Don Roybal, Oneonta Mayor Ross Norris, Shedd, and Blount County administrator John Bullard.

CAWACO stands for Cahaba/ Warrior/Coosa, the three river basins draining the organization’s service area: Blount, Chilton, Jefferson, Shelby, and Walker counties. It is a 501(c)(3) resource conservation and economic support organization with a long history of providing grants to Blount County schools, community, and first responder needs and projects.

– Ron Gholson