By DUSTIN STONE

The assembly has approved a request from the Skagway Volunteer Fire Department for an extra $2,663 in the FY18 budget to be put toward the purchase of a new ambulance.

The FY17 budget included $94,013 for this purpose, to be used in conjunction with a $70,000 grant from the Southeast Emergency Medical Services Council, but according to Fire Chief Jeremy Simmons, uncertainties surrounding the state budget held up the release of grant money until September 2016 and delayed purchase of the ambulance.

During this waiting period, Simmons told the assembly, the cost of the same vehicle previously approved by the municipality, increased to $166,676 due to inflation.

Because the ambulance will not be completed until FY18, Simmons asked that the additional amount needed to complete the purchase be added to the department’s upcoming budget request.

The assembly voted unanimously to approve the increase.