Chicago area fire department to sell ads on trucks - New York News

Chicago area fire department to sell ads on trucks

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CHICAGO (FOX 32 News) -

A northern Illinois fire district plans to sell advertising on its fire trucks and ambulances in order to raise money.

"On the ambulance, it would go right about here…about a 24 inch by 24 inch square on both sides," Fire Chief Hank Clemmensen said.

If Clemmensen gets his way, business ads will be posted on fire trucks and ambulances in the Palatine Rural Fire District.

"[Nothing will be done to question the integrity of the department], Absolutely not," added Clemmensen. "I don't want us to look like a race car, but there's a revenue generating possibility here and I want us to take advantage of it."

Clemmensen said that his district lost about $300,000 last year. He was hoping homeowners in Inverness would have voted in favor of a property tax increase. However, it was rejected last week and now to help maintain the emergency vehicles and pay the 20 firefighters on staff, the chief will sell out space on their emergency vehicles generating about $25,000 a year.

"Ads like first alert [and] advocate health center," said Clemmensen.

The district is also looking at other ways to raise funds. Last year, they started charging residents $600 for false alarms.

The owner of Fat Tony's, a neighborhood pizza shop, said that he applauds the chief for thinking outside the box, or in this case, the fire truck.

"To be able to use something like a fire truck to help us advertise and increase revenue and taxes, I think it's a great idea," said Martin Castro, the pizza shop owner.

Clemmensen said the agency is "in a desperate situation." He also said the money generated will be "critical" to the department's operation.

Arizona-based Public Safety Advertising will receive a 15 percent commission on ad sales.

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