12-10-1999, 12:52 PM #1Sparkill Fire deptFirehouse.com Guest
Money funding question for a new truck
Here's our situation>>>
We want to replace our 1975 Aerial Ladder with a new one (You know the price up to and around $500,000) THE FIRE DISTRICT WONT PASS THIS COST ONTO THE TAXPAYERS...
We are suburban @ 1400 homes very little industry (some small businesses and such)
HOWEVER we do protect the following
TAX EXEMPT Locations.
2 - Colleges(One doing very well - Expanding)
4 - Handicapped residence & treatment facilities
3 - Senior citizen residence facilities
and an Earth Science/Weather/Geological Research center (Weather prediction center is the only one of this type in the country) This center is parented by a famous University.
ALL OF THESE DO NOT CONTRIBUTE TO the FIRE DISTRICT TAX
and they give us @ 70% of our alarms.
Now the question is does anyone know (or is anyone in a similar situation and has done this) IS THERE A WAY WE CAN GET FUNDING FROM THESE LOCATIONS TO HELP US PURCHASE A NEW TRUCK, Obviously the truck would protect their investments.
(I'm posting this in other forums due to their volume of activity So sorry for the cross post.)
Sparkill FD - JRM31333@aol.com
12-10-1999, 03:30 PM #2Lieutenant GonzoFirehouse.com Guest
Hmmm....They say they are exempt from the fire district tax, but use the services of your department....there's a term for them....freeloaders. The least they can do is make an annual payment in lieu of taxes. These types of facilities must have annual reports that your district administration can review to figure out what their fair share is. Another thing you can look at is billing them for your services, for exmple, after a certain number of calls they get charged on a progressive basis, That way your department isn't babysitting alarm systems for them. What are the college's endowment funds? I'm willing to bet that their fund would have enough $$$ to pay for for a few aerials. Are the nursing homes locally owned or part of a chain? another point to ponder...
[This message has been edited by Lieutenant Gonzo (edited December 12, 1999).]
12-10-1999, 03:37 PM #3Halligan84Firehouse.com Guest
First, I agree that getting some of your tax exempts to pay is a good idea, but not a likely prospect. The senior center and rehab place probably barely get by and after all are providing services of their own. The University is a good start, I wouldn't expect much though.
The real reason for my posting though starts now. Why in world would the district not pass the cost to the taxpayers?? The district is there to collect the tax and fund the FD! I'm sick of seeing us having to go hat in hand to fund essential services. We have a very well funded fire district and are fortunate, but EMS in our town is municipally (non) funded. The message is, after your done running a thousand runs and doing all this training, go sell some cakes to buy a new tool!
If your District won't fund it and you need it, vote them out. The FD could run a information campaign to let the taxpayers know what the rig would do and what it would cost them individually.
I think it's insane that we are entering the year 2000 and the fire service is not funded as an essential service. I have never seen the public works department fund a back hoe through fund raisers and I have never seen the cops buy new cars every year with payments from a college or senior center! If you Chief and membership know that you need to replace a 25 year old rig, wake your District up and tell them you won't tolerate no for an answer.
12-11-1999, 11:22 AM #4Medic019Firehouse.com Guest
I know your Woes...We are a small rural area that runs year to year on the little funding "Donations" that the municipalities provide to our department on a yearly basis - These "Donations" cover basically the cost of normal operations and leaves very little left for purchasing new equipment to enhance our services and/or replace old worn ragged equipment.
My suggestion - Bill your responses !!
We just started doin such and it is very flexible. We are utilizing a billing service that keeps only 10% of the amount paid. It is a start for you. Also, another department in the region bills for response to alarms after a certain number of alarms.
Also keep a good working relationship with the college - they are great at finding grant monies and maybe able to assist you in finding some to help in the purchase of the apparatus that you are seeking.
Good Luck - Tad Acker
PS if you want the E-mail addy for the billing agency Email me for it...
12-11-1999, 02:35 PM #5DED1645Firehouse.com Guest
That's a tough position to be in. But I do know what you're going threw. I'm from the area Halligan is from and there is a local department that had the same problem. I remember the chief of the department saying that they have a college and a hospital across the street from the station which they provide srevice for and they recieve no to very little support from them. And they were in need of new apparatus. The only suggestion is to goto the the facilities and basically state your situation. The worst that could happen is they give you no more than what you get now...Nothing. Good Luck.
Presently Lindenwold,NJ(I'm not a member of any of this District's dept's.)
12-18-1999, 08:30 AM #6Ray RFirehouse.com Guest
Are the tax exempt organizations private, state, or federally owned? Check your state laws to see if ther is a provision for payment in lieu of taxes.
Do the colleges and weather prediction center have their own police and EMS (standbys for sporting events etc.) or do they pay for local coverage? If they pay for local coverage you should talk to the administration about a fee schedule. You are providing an emergency service just like the police and EMS.
I don't think that the tax district should be funding the whole cost of equipment when you have most of your responses to the tax exempt organizations.
Perhaps the tax exempts would be willing to assist with a "targeted" fund raising campaign with the resulting good publicity in funding your new truck. Most institutions are responsive to positive coverage in the media.
Make sure you have all of your statistics in an easy to understand format when you approach the organizations. It is even better if you can show figures for several years especially if you have an increase in responses each year. You may also want to provide some facts and figures on the cost of operating the department. Most people think that a fire deparment,especially volunteer, is just a place to park trucks until called. Some are amazed at the cost of equipment, insurance, and other operating costs. Make your case that your are a business providing a service.
12-18-1999, 11:39 AM #7Hammerhead338Firehouse.com Guest
Have you asked the colleges if they would give you some money. The college in our town gives the city some money, its not very much but it is something. Sounds like the district board needs to go away.
Have a good day and be safe.
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