Editorial: Partake in planning for new Wading River firehouse

It’s not the kind of news story that’s going to make the cover, but that doesn’t mean it deserves less attention. A fire station building project might sound mundane, but it’s still an undertaking that could have a significant impact on you or someone you know.

After failing to gain support in 2012 for a reconstruction of its Hulse Landing Road fire station, the Wading River Fire District has made an effort in recent months to hold public meetings and invite community members to help craft a plan that would both improve its facility and satisfy taxpayers. Mailers have been sent out and the little district that could even started its own Facebook page and hired a public relations consultant to help get the word out.

But turnout hasn’t been stellar — just as turnout for the 2012 bond proposal wasn’t good, when fewer than 325 residents voted. About 20 people attended the last meeting. Kudos to those who showed up there, and at previous meetings, to hear what’s being offered and provide their own perspective. But for a proposal that failed to gain the community’s support last time around, it’s a shame that more of a conversation isn’t being had about the effort this time. Perhaps that will change, now that the numbers are out.

This isn’t to advocate one way or another on the proposal itself, but simply to remind readers that they have an opportunity to play a role in the future of a hamlet — and the impact this project will have on taxpayers in Wading River is real. The district has opened its doors and invited the public into the process, which is nice to see. So read up, follow the district on Facebook, gather some facts and become part of the process.

These days, participation can be as simple as sending a Facebook message.