Umatilla County Fire District #1 is asking voters to consider a bond measure in the May election, which will fund a variety of equipment, vehicle, and facility upgrades.
These are intended to protect first responder health and safety, ensure continued reliable response times to emergency calls, and modernize equipment and facilities to reduce long-term maintenance costs.
“The continued population growth of our area is creating new challenges in meeting the rising demand for service,” said Umatilla County Fire District #1 Chief Scott Stanton. “At peak service times, including summer fire season, outdated vehicles and equipment become a real concern. We need safe and healthy personnel to make sure we can protect the residents and property in western Umatilla County.”
The 20-year bond package – Measure 30-148 – is $13.1 million at an estimated cost of $0.23 per $1,000 of assessed value. A citizen oversight committee will review the projects and expenditures over the life of the bond to ensure dollars are being spent for their intended purpose.
The projects included in the bond are:
- Emergency responder safety apparatus, including portable radio systems and protective equipment to preserve personnel and volunteer health.
- Fire station renovations to create separate quarters for men and women, new alert systems for all stations, and roofing repairs to reduce long-term maintenance costs.
- Expanded vehicle bays to create adequate staging areas for response vehicles and upgraded engine exhaust systems to reduce health risks for personnel.
- Upgraded fire and ambulance vehicles to ensure response times can remain low and to reduce ongoing maintenance costs.
“The projects funded by this bond will allow the fire district to prepare for the continued growth of the region while protecting our communities and the men and women who provide emergency services,” said Stanton.
The measure will appear on the ballot for the May 18 election.