Both the Cedarville fire protection district in Stephenson County, and the Boone County Fire District 2 will be asking voters to pass a tax increase later this month. District two in Boone County held an informational meeting about its referendum. They are asking for $30 extra tax dollars for every $100,000 of assessed property value. Thirty dollars doesn't sound like much but when you add it up, the fire department would gain over $300,000, to invest in some much needed equipment upgrades.
The average age of district two's current rescue vehicles is more than 12 years old. Those vehicles are used for anything from responding to house fires to assisting ambulances on trauma situations. If the referendum passes much of the money would be used to replace a tanker costing almost $200,000. The money would also begin a replacement program for personal protection equipment used by the firefighters
If the referendum doesn’t go through the aging equipment won’t get replaced very fast, including a tanker they've had for over 20 years. They are also thinking about not keeping the fire station manned 24/7 because they simply can’t afford the cost.
In addition to the referendum, district two also holds various fundraisers through the year. Sunday March 12 they will be serving breakfast from 7 a.m. to 12 p.m. at their Garden Prairie Fire Department.