First Arriving Network
First Arriving Network

FD Gives Its Ladies the Heave-Ho

Ladies Auxiliary Evicted From Firehouse

THERE ARE PROBABLY A LOT of cold and late dinners being served in Croydon, New Hampshire, this month after the town's volunteer fire department evicted the Ladies Auxiliary from the firehouse.


The court-issued eviction notice gives the gals until September 15 to vacate their office and leave the Bingo hall.  After a month's hiatus to move all their stuff, the Ladies will reopen their weekly Bingo game in the Newport Moose Lodge on October 3.  How this acrimony arose that lead to this ultimate indignity is not quite clear to the bemused citizens.

The Valley News is reporting:

(Auxiliary member Sandy) Beard is one of the few people willing to speak at length about the acrimony at the fire station. She places the blame on Fire Chief Steve Rizza .

Beard said Rizza and other members want full control over the auxiliary, and because they can’t get it, they kicked the women out of the fire station.

Contacted last week, Rizza declined to discuss what led to the eviction. "There are a lot of issues that led up to this type of situation," said Rizza. He referred a reporter to a letter he wrote responding to the auxiliary’s letter to newspapers that accused the department of refusing to meet with the group and evicting it without cause.

The Aug. 22 letter from Rizza to the Selectboard and public stated: "As Chief and President of the Croydon Fire Department, I want to respond simply by saying that the members of the Fire Department take the actions that are necessary to protect the safety of the citizens and property of Croydon. The Fire Department will continue, as ever, to be certain that such interests are secure."

The eviction notice, issued in June and effective Sept. 15, listed several reasons for the action, one of which claims the auxiliary "has failed to keep its promise to provide cooperation and support to the department." The notice also said the situation has resulted in the auxiliary becoming a "burden and obstruction to the Fire Department" in use of the premises.

Until recently the Ladies Auxiliary was the primary fund-raising source for the VFD, but since the FD received a $2.3 million bequest for its benefit, attitudes seem to have changed and during the past month "public letters" have been sailing back and forth between the two entities.

Read the full nitty-gritty in The Valley News HERE.

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