As part of the city of Rio Rancho Fiscal Year 2023 Mid-Year Budget Adjustments, 15 fire cadets have been added for the remainder of FY 2023, including salary and benefits.

The added cadets will take part in a forthcoming academy in order to backfill eight positions and account for seven new positions necessary to reopen Fire Station 6 in the Mariposa neighborhood. The budget adjustment totals just under $345,000 for the new personnel positions.

The station has been closed since 2014 when a study was conducted to identify a need to re-prioritize resources.

Since then Mariposa residents have been asking after the fire station to reopen out of worry for their safety. Several people took to Nextdoor, upset that the nearest fire station wouldn’t get out to them in time for medical emergencies.

Observer archives show in 2017, there were 38 calls for service from Mariposa. It took Rio Rancho Fire Rescue crews an average of 14 minutes to arrive.

In May, Battalion Chief Ryan Floersheim said, “In 2014, our department’s leadership, together with the city, made the difficult decision to relocate our personnel from Station 6 to stations in the southern part of the city, where a disproportionate volume of our calls was, and continue to be.”

He also said the decision was made to ensure operational efficiency and they continued to closely monitor the shifting demands on resources.

Renovation for the Mariposa Fire Station was approved in May of last year to fix walls, ceilings, floors and bathrooms with work beginning earlier this month.