Grand Valley Fire District mill levy OK’d |

Grand Valley Fire District mill levy OK’d

Alex Zorn

Grand Valley Fire Protection District voters decided in voting that concluded this week to support their local fire and emergency services. The election was conducted by special mail ballot sent out by the district, and was separate from the general election that also just concluded.

The fire district’s mill levy override proposal passed with 964 in favor and 887 against, according to the unofficial results.

The proposed 2.966 mill levy increase is intended to provide the district funds to bring back many of the services it had a few years ago. It’s the district’s first tax increase in 19 years.

“I’m very pleased with the outcome of the vote and I’m thankful the community supported it,” said Grand Valley Fire Chief David Blair. “The vote was not unanimous, and we want to make sure everybody knows we will use the funds wisely as we have in the past. And we will continue to seek public input in meetings and operations.”

Blair said the mill levy will allow the district to start to build the budgets in the capital replacement fund and the future operational reserves fund to help sustain operations for the next few years.

“Had it not passed, we would have continued to save where we could cut operations where it required,” he added.

Among the many services that are proposed to be brought back include the summer wildfire initial attack and hazard mitigation program, which helps to prevent wildfires from starting in the first place.

It will also allow the district to replace aging equipment when necessary.

The last mill levy increase in the district was in 1999, and despite a net decline in assessed value since 2008 the district has not gone for a tax increase until now.

“We are hopeful it will be at least 19 years until the next mill levy is passed,” Blair said.

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