Dear Editor, I wanted to thank our community for participating in the recent discussions asking voters to consider a benefit charge. The Board of Fire Commissioners for South County Fire approved a resolution to place a benefit charge measure on the November General Election ballot.
Under a benefit charge, the fire levy is reduced from $1.50 to $1.00 per $1,000 of assessed property value and replaced with an annual charge based on a property’s size and use. For example, single family homes pay less than commercial buildings because it costs less to defend them in a fire. Seniors, disabled persons, and low-income households maintain any current exemptions they have through the county. There is also a discount for fire sprinkler systems.
If approved by voters, South County Fire would set the benefit charge at a rate that that will result in a net revenue decrease of $1.3 million for 2021. This is possible because of increased reimbursement we are receiving from the federal government to provide service for Medicaid patients. More information is available on our website, www.southsnofire.org/ElectionInfo.
We appreciate the consideration of our community for this proposal.
Jim Kenny, Chair
Board of Commissioners
South County Fire