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posted: 2/23/2014 1:01 AM

Endorsement: 'Yes' to maintain Palatine rural fire district staffing

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The Daily Herald Editorial Board

Like most suburban government bodies reliant on property taxes, the Palatine Rural Fire Protection District has lost money as property values drop -- $300,000 between 2011 and 2012 alone. Yes, hopefully property values will rise and the fire district will recover the money it says it needs to run an efficient and effective department. But Palatine Rural is a small operation and losing $300,000 has hit it hard. Fire Chief Hank Clemmensen said without additional money from the proposed tax hike, the district will eventually reduce each shift to four firefighters instead of five. We think the safety of fire district residents, many of whom live in areas without fire hydrants, is better served with five firefighters on each shift. We recommend a "yes" vote March 18.

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