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2017 Ballot Measure

posted Jun 19, 2017, 11:58 AM by Julie Harter

                           2017 Ballot Measure

 ¨ This proposition would authorize issuance of general obligation bonds of no more than $995,000 for the purpose of constructing and equipping living quarters, constructing a storage area, and acquiring other capital facilities.  With this Bond we plan to complete the following:

à Upgrade existing storage building into living quarters to house resident firefighters;

à Upgrade front concrete apron to accommodate the increased weight of modern fire & rescue equipment;

à Pave the rear station and training area to reduce wear & tear on our fire hoses and couplers;

à Update our Self-Contained Breathing Apparatus (SCBAs) and Personal Protection Equipment (PPE) to the current safety standards;

à Construct a new storage area large enough to house our additional response equipment, including our reserve fire boat.

¨ Lower Tax Rate!  In 2016, a previous Bond for the District was retired. It was set at $.45 per thousand. The new bond would be asking for $.44 per thousand. As the assessed value of the District increases, our bond rate per thousand of assessed value decreases.

¨ The bonds will be payable from annual excess property tax levies for up to 10 years. The annual excess property tax will be approximately $88.00 per year on a $200,000 home in 2018, which equals approximately $7.33 per month.

¨ Volunteer firefighter ranks are at an all-time low. We do not have the budget to hire full-time firefighter/EMTs but need to continue providing quality fire protection and medical care. If we converted our present storage building into living quarters, college students and/or firefighter/EMT students could live at the station in exchange for responding to calls on their time off. We could then construct new dry storage for our vehicles and marine rescue equipment.

¨ In the last several years we have lost 41% of our volunteers, even with our recruiting efforts, and we struggle to provide the kind of service our residents need and deserve.

¨ Although we have continued to replace and upgrade equipment with high-quality used equipment from other sources we have insufficient reserves and need to upgrade our self-contained breathing apparatus (SCBA) and bunker gear.

¨ Our Firefighters/EMT’s volunteer much of their time at a cost to family and often to employers.  We owe them the best possible equipment and recruiting support that these enhancements will allow us to provide.

¨ We take our responsibility to our Island residents very seriously and strive to provide the best and most professional service to you all with smart financial decisions in mind.

¨ Please contact Chief Jim Bixler at (253) 884-4040 or with any questions.