Foia Request for financial documents regarding the Fairview Plaza Firehouse

There is already a firehouse, found at the entrance to Fairview park. I think it was 2019 when I first heard about the plans to construct a new firehouse. I inquired & was told it would be around $5 million dollars (at a council meeting). I was also told that it was necessary because the old firehouse is degrading (at a council meeting), because the old firehouse doesn't have sufficient fire exits (by lisa gregory at a council meeting), and because the old firehouse isn't great for co-ed housing (by Mayor Wolfe after a council meeting).

It's possible this is necessary infrastructure work. An extended family member who was a first responder for the fire dept (out of a different firehouse) told me the fairview firehouse has needed this for years. I'm highly skeptical. I suspect preventative maintenance could have been done. Or the existing building could be built on to.

Why do I care? It's a lot of money that could go toward more consequential projects. It's also a lot of materials that pull from a limited supply on our planet. It's also on a lot that I believe is privately owned & I wonder if that brings an additional cost.

The actual Request I made

I'm looking for all financial information/records & contracts regarding the construction and ongoing maintenance of the new firehouse in Fairview Plaza.

The information i request includes, but is not limited to:

  • a list of all entities hired to construct the firehouse and the amount each entity was paid (or will be paid) for their work.
  • any alternate proposals that were not chosen, including proposals to repair & refurbish the existing firehouse outside fairview park
  • any documents regarding the land on which the new firehouse is built (lease, purchase agreement, etc)
  • any documents regarding the work done on the parking lot or street prior to / after / in service of the new firehouse (grant agreements, contracts for work)

Thanks -- Reed Sutman


  • September 2, 2021: I sent the foia request to
  • September 13, 2021: I received response from Kim Althoff (City Clerk)
  • September 15, 2021:
  • September 16, 2021:
    • FOIA Request made publicly available on this site.

Next Steps

  • review the files
  • Record important information
    • Is there a perpetual lease or does Decatur own the land?
    • Who's profitting from the construction?
    • Was the construction truly necessary? Were there motives beyond the actual function it serves?
    • What's the timeline of this development?
    • Who initiated the construction efforts?
    • ... other questions ...
    • How much money was spent?
    • Where did the funds come from?


Feedback, Corrections, More Info

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