Island County Fire District 3 takes step toward levy increase

Island County Fire District 3 took another step toward a possible levy increase next year to raise money for a new facility at Bayview, Fire Chief Dan Stout said today.

District commissioners approved a resolution Thursday to permit them to ask voters for a $3.5 million levy lid lift to build a new headquarters and training facility across from Bayview Corner and Bayview School, and to make needed improvements to existing facilities.

"The levy lift would probably be late next year, if we even decide to do it, economic conditions being what they are right now," Stout said. "We need to do some educating of ourselves and the public before we go ahead."

He said the resolution had to be approved by commissioners before Nov. 15 to permit the district to go ahead with the proposal next year.

Stout said asking voters to approve a 25-cent increase in the property tax lid to 76 cents per $1,000 of assessed valuation is being considered. The current rate is 51 cents per $1,000.

Meanwhile, the new Langley Fire Station is nearly complete, and the district is eyeing an open house for the public around Nov. 15, Stout said.

The district serves about 16,000 residents. It has between 70 and 85 volunteers, who receive only stipends for responses and training.

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