Fire Safety Tax on Aug. 8 Ballot
"I think every little boy wants to be a firefighter or a cop," said Chief Ed Hancock, the only paid firefighter in the Gravois Mills Fire Protection District. He hopes voters change that by passing the ballot measure.
"There's simply not enough money to staff all the positions now," Hancock explained. "Our volunteers have been the heart and soul of this department forever, and the best value that taxpayers have because they're out here doing this work for very little."
The $7 million bond issue would help pay staff, buy new engines and replace old equipment which volunteers often have to fix themselves. For example, a 200-foot hose costs about $1,000.
The district would repay the bond issue with a 25 cent property tax increase, as well as adding another 16 cents for ongoing expenses. The total annual cost for the owner of a $100,000 home would be about $75, but supporters say homeowners would gain more than that in insurance savings.