If Washington Township is approved as a member, that would eventually make seven out of 11 Townships that are a part of the MFPD. It would mean nine out of 11 townships get fire protection from MFPD, either as members or through contract.
This year Benton Township was already approved for joining the district in 2022, the same year Washington Township would become a member.
A recently announced three-year $3.8 million federal grant that was awarded to MFPD won’t reduce the property tax rate that member township residents pay. But it will provide immediate funding for 14 additional firefighters and reduce the amount of cash reserves that need to be tapped in 2022, according to MFPD chief Dustin Dillard.
A committee of the Monroe County tax council voted Tuesday morning against a recommendation to allocate $353,700 of public safety income tax money to support requests made by four rural fire departments in the county.
The potential direct allocation of funds to the fire departments would have made up about 4.5 percent of the $7.8 million that the committee was using as a conservative estimate for the total amount it could allocate for 2021.
The distribution of local income tax revenues for 2021 is based on 2019 income tax filings, which have been delayed because of relaxed deadlines due to the COVID-19 pandemic.
The vote on the seven-member PS-LIT (public safety local income tax) committee was 2–5 for the direct allocation of the funds to the Monroe County Fire Protection District, and fire departments serving Richland, Bean Blossom, and Benton townships.
The tally flipped to 5–2 for the committee’s vote on its recommended allocations for 2021 public safety income tax revenue.
The dispatch center—which is a public safety answering point (PSAP)—is recommended to receive its requested budget of $2,247,490.