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November 6, 2012
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Letter: Thoughts on Fire Dist. 2

Thoughts on Fire Dist. 2

Fire District No. 2 has engaged in heavy-handed tactics in its pursuit of the dollars generated by annexing homes. Even after conducting an election that resulted in a negative vote for annexation, the fire chief is continuing to press individual property owners to annex.

For example, I found out two years after purchasing my home that I was outside the district. I received a letter from the fire chief saying if I did not annex then I would no longer have fire protection for my home. He also states that he is notifying the insurance and mortgage companies in our area of the homes outside his district.

I do not mind paying for fire service and I will pay for the response on my own. My main objection is the method being used to persuade property owners.

The fire district spent $12,000 on the election and then an additional $2,200 to send certified letters to more than 300 property owners to notify us of a one-time opportunity to annex.

I think the district has overspent and is now threatening property owners in order to find a way to generate more income. The chief makes $108,000 per year. The fire marshal makes $94,000 per year. Three fire captains make $87,000 and 14 lieutenants make $75,000 per year. The district pays the total cost of PERS retirement for all employees including their contribution, which adds up to $988,000 each year. The district pays for all employee health benefits at a cost of $1,276,367 annually.

The total revenue from the un-annexed property would mean an additional $320,000 for the fire district. Where do you think the money will go?

Ray Duncan Sr.

Winchester


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The News-Review Updated Nov 19, 2012 03:12PM Published Nov 15, 2012 04:36PM Copyright 2012 The News-Review. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten or redistributed.