KENNEWICK, WA - Benton County Fire District #1 is asking voters to approve a $3 million bond and renew a fire levy in the August election.
As Kennewick continues to grow, the fire district's need for funding is crucial so they can respond to emergencies around the community.
Their main resources are levies and bonds because they aren't eligible for funding from the public safety sales tax fund.
The fire district pays for daily operations through a fire levy of $1.50 per $1,000 of property value which voters have a choice to renew every six years; this rate will remain the same in 2019.
The bond is to help replace aging station equipment and add living quarters to the fire station in Badger Canyon so the district can ultimately staff the area full-time.
"The aging apparatus we want to replace is from 1992," says Scott LoParco. "We want to get something that's a little more reliable and less maintenance cost and allows us to do our job better."
This bond is a penny less than the bonds it would be replacing and would last for 20 years. It will be an estimated 10-cents per $1,000 of assesses property value.
During the summer, the fire station in Finley only has two temporary firefighters in the day and no one at night. This bond would allow them to staff the station 24 hours a day, seven days a week.
The second public meeting will be held on July 16th at 5:30 p.m. at station 140 on 7704 S. Bermuda Road, Kennewick, WA 99338.
More information can be found on www.bentonone.org.