LETTER TO THE EDITOR | Citizens are blessed
October 26, 2009 · 7:59 AM
To the editor:
As I step down as fire chief, I wanted to publicly say thank you for the privilege of being the chief of an outstanding volunteer fire district.
The citizens of this community are truly blessed to have a cadre of dedicated and skillful volunteers who dedicate untold hours to serve their friends and neighbors. They dedicate many of those hours to maintaining their skills and learning new skills. They then respond around the clock to provide an extremely efficient and timely service.
Without these volunteers the district would not have one of, if not the lowest, fire-levy rate in the state. The tax is currently at
51 cents per $1,000 of assessed value, and this is achieved by maintaining an effective volunteer response force. This cost-effective service would require at least three times the current revenue if we were paying on-duty firefighters.
The state of the district is excellent. During the past 12 years the district has replaced or updated 16 pieces of response apparatus and replaced or updated four fire stations.
The district has also purchased property in the Bayview area to develop a fire station, training facility and administrative facility. We have also recently ordered two new engines to replace outdated and worn equipment. This has been done with cash! The district is debt-free, which is unusual in the state of Washington. What an honor to manage such an organization.
I have been extremely fortunate to work with the most professional board of fire commissioners that I have ever worked for. They always consider what is in the best interest of the community, the volunteers and what is fiscally responsible. They are dedicated to providing the highest level of service possible with the revenue that is provided. I hope the citizens will continue what is a cohesive board of fire commissioners by retaining your current board. You cannot do better than what you have.
I am also thankful for the experienced and professional staff. The staff is dedicated to supporting the volunteers and serving the public.
Again, I want to say thank you to a great organization and community, and the best to you in the future.
Fire District 3 Fire Chief (Soon to be retired)