Bellbrook fire levy would increase staffing

By Anna Bolton -

BELLBROOK — Residents will be asked to vote on an additional 1.75 mill fire and EMS fund levy on the May 8 primary election ballot.

The levy is for a continuing period of time, commencing in 2018.

If passed, the levy would provide funding strictly for fire and emergency medical services. This would allow for the hiring of one additional full-time firefighter/paramedic. It would also allow for an increase in the number of scheduled part-time hours.

“Essentially this is allowing us to … make more consistent staffing numbers,” Fire Chief Jim Neidhard said. “They fluctuate up and down quite a bit because of lack of part-time fire fighters.”

The fire department will have authorized staffing of two full-time firefighter/paramedics and two part-time firefighter/EMTs on a 24-hour per day basis, according to the city’s website.

“The Bellbrook Fire Department has not received increased property taxes since 2009. In fact, Fire Department revenue in 2017 is only $30,000 more than it was in 2010 — a 3 percent increase over a seven year period,” the website states.

For the owner of a $100,000 appraised value of property, the levy would cost approximately $61.25 per year or $5.10 per month.

“This allows us to continue the same level of safety service that the community expects,” Neidhard said. “Community members should go out and vote.”

By Anna Bolton

Contact Anna Bolton at 937-502-4498 or follow @annadbolton on Facebook.

Contact Anna Bolton at 937-502-4498 or follow @annadbolton on Facebook.