Voters in north Blaine County should vote on Nov. 5 for Jed Gray, for Ketchum Rural Fire commissioner. Jed represents county residents living north of the Greenhorn Fire Station to Galena Pass. I serve as a fire commissioner with Jed on the Ketchum Rural Fire District, where he has been elected chair since 2012.

Although there is not always agreement, Jed’s commitment to ensuring the safety of residents in northern Blaine County is unwavering. Through collaboration and firefighter input, the Ketchum Rural Fire District maintains up-to-date firefighting equipment, including modern fire trucks and critical safety equipment such as air packs, extrication equipment and communication gear for firefighters. Ketchum Rural owns two fire stations with housing for up to 12 responders, two structural engines, two brush trucks and two water tankers. With his leadership, the district has maintained a balanced budget and has set aside funds annually for capital outlay so that we can afford to make improvements to our equipment and two fire stations (Greenhorn and Griffith Butte) without asking voters to increase their taxes.

In addition to his leadership on the Ketchum Rural Fire District, Jed is a well-known community leader who has served on numerous nonprofit Wood River Valley boards and as the president of the Board of Realtors. His relationships with Ketchum, Sun Valley and county elected officials and fire personnel facilitate communication and increase the effectiveness of emergency response. This was demonstrated during the major wildland fires that have faced the north valley during Jed’s tenure. These relationships are also important for further community discussion of consolidation of fire services in northern Blaine County. Jed has the proven leadership to lead the Ketchum Rural Fire District.

For these reasons, I hope county residents will go to the polls on Tuesday, Nov. 5, and re-elect Jed Gray.

Earl Engelmann, Ketchum

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