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      New gear debate cools down

      On Thursday evening Worth County Commissioners voted to purchase 16 new sets of gear for the fire department, who has been forced to use gear way past its expiration.

      Equipment is considered unsafe and unusable after 10 years and fire officials say many of their sets are in their teens. After the original order scheduled for August didn TMt go through, the fire department brought their issue to the commission.

      Commissioners say they didn TMt purchase new sets for everyone, but the new equipment will have a trickledown effect.

      "This new gear is going to be used for the full-time firefighters and then their gear is going to be handed down to part-timers and then the part-timers gear is going down the volunteers," said Commission Chair Mike Cosby.

      Although it isn TMt exactly what the department needs, they say it TMs a start.

      "We do have 70-something odd volunteers and we do have about 10 part-time personnel so it will not completely put everybody in new gear, but it will put everybody in newer gear. It's a step forward," said Captain John Graddy.