Today, I am advocating strongly that the residents of North Whidbey support and vote for the levy lid lift for North Whidbey Fire & Rescue, or NWFR. On the Nov. 3 ballot there is a request to increase from the current 62 cents per $1,000 to 77 cents per $1,000 of property value. This is only a 15 cent increase, which equals an average of just $5 a month for homeowners.
This needed increase is to be used primarily for upgrading radios — all radios are at least 20 years old — breathing equipment and two 17-year-old fire engines.
It has been over 20 years since an increase has been enacted. The time is now to help NWFR and its primarily volunteer firefighters and staff that serve and protect us and our community. This affects 18,000 residents in 55 square miles and 2,400 calls a year to 911 – a 45% increase in calls over the past 10 years.
Your vote to agree to this levy is not just for your community as a whole, but also for your surrounding forest, your home, your loved ones and yourself. No one ever knows when the need arises to call 911 for a fire or health related emergency.
We all want to be sure that our first responders have the resources needed to help us all. Voting yes will allow the best possible chance for all the above reasons.