Hollister City Council members this week approved a new contract for fire services with San Benito County but tabled a similar deal with the City of San Juan Bautista.
The council voted 4-1 on the county fire matter, with Mayor Ignacio Velazquez dissenting.
The new deal with be for seven years with options for three additional years. Previously, Velazquez has expressed concern about buying equipment for the county and San Juan and taking ownership of everything.
The initial contract started in May 2013 and was renewed in October 2015. The current contract expired on Oct. 1 but has been continuing on a month-to-month basis. A new contract for services has been prepared by staff. The new term will automatically renew for three successive one year terms, unless terminated pursuant to the terms of the contract, according to the city council agenda.
The scope of services will include emergency response to incidents that involve fire, fire investigations, medical services, hazardous materials release, technical rescue and hazardous conditions.
The amount of the contract for the first year is $1.845 million. The contract will increase 3 percent each year on Jan. 1 for the term of the contract. The annual amounts are listed in the contract. In addition, the contract may be reopened in the event the County of San Benito has a residential growth rate greater than 12.5% during the initial four years of the contract.
The contract with San Juan Bautista called for a payment of $228,000 the first year. It is also for seven years. It includes an agreement for Hollister to lease Station No. 4 from the City of San Juan Bautista located at 311 Second St. to provide services to the western portion of San Benito County at a rate of $36,000 per year. In addition, provided San Juan Bautista continues to maintain a diesel mechanic on staff, the City of Hollister will pay a labor rate of $75 per hour for work performed on fire apparatus.