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What Have the Fire Departments Done to Reduce Cost?

For decades the County and the Fire Districts kept costs low by relying on volunteer personnel to respond to calls for service and to assist the career staff with those responses. As the population ages, two income families are more prevalent, and stricter training requirements for firefighters have all contributed to the decline of the volunteers providing fire protection services. This has resulted in a growing need to provide paid staff to respond to calls for service in the County, which has increased costs.

The Fire Districts/Departments have maintained staffing at less than industry standard levels, frozen wages and stipends, deferred maintenance on equipment, continued to operate fire engines that in many cases are 10 or more years overdue for replacement and not upgraded to the latest technologies and equipment for firefighter safety and saving lives.