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Posted: May 12, 2010 12:30 a.m.

More room to breathe

Sam B. Hay donates office to NCFD

Brittany Thomas/

Brand new home: Sam B. Hay Jr, donated this office space on U.S. Highway 278 for the NCFD to use.

The administrative staff of the Newton County Fire Service has a new place to call home after a generous donation from a Newton County resident.

According to NCFD Chief Mike Satterfield, he approached Sam B. Hay Jr. founder of Sunbelt Builders, a commercial real estate construction and design company, about leasing an office on U.S. Highway 278 but was unable to afford the cost.

Satterfield placed a new office in the department’s long-range plans and anticipated being able to lease or build in three to five years. In the fall, Hay approached Satterfield with a suggestion. Instead of planning for the future, why not accept a donation of an office for the administrative services.

The department gladly accepted and moved in about two months ago, according to Satterfield. The office was move-in ready.

"Instead of leasing it, we ended up being property owners," said Satterfield. "We were desperately in need of additional space but we just didn’t have the funds. Who knows," he added, "with the current climate we’re in it certainly would have been difficult to accomplish." 

The property was deeded to the county and accommodates all of their current and most of their future needs. There is 8,100-square-feet of space, a conference and training room, kitchen, break room, offices, sitting areas and restrooms. The previous space at Station 1 on Flat Shoals Road had 1,200-square-feet of space.

"It has ample office space and a large training conference room where we can bring in our firefighters and have training classes and have regional meetings. It will accommodate a number of things we were lacking before," said Satterfield.

Hay’s donation allowed the funds that would have been used for the planned office space to be freed up for other critical infrastructure or capital equipment that might be needed in the future.

"It was a tremendous gift to us," said Satterfield. "We have a wonderful place to come to work and just to know that we have gracious civic-minded citizens out there, that support the fire department and our county, well, it carries you a long way. We are just tickled to death to know that you have people out there that care and really want Newton County to succeed."

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