Endorsement: Yes on Bloomingdale fire district borrowing
Every call for help from the Bloomingdale Fire Protection District is urgent; the caller shouldn't have to wonder whether the equipment heading out to provide assistance is in danger of breaking down. The district's fleet, though, includes a fire engine that's more than 20 years old, and its other two engines have more than 100,000 miles on them. An ambulance has covered more than 120,000 miles in service.
Voters on March 20 will decide how the district handles the aging fleet. The district is seeking permission to borrow $4.5 million -- to be repaid over 10 years through property taxes -- with $3.17 million earmarked for replacing engines, ambulances and other vehicles. The remaining money would be used to make repairs at two district buildings and to update equipment, such as ECG monitors, that needs replacing.
If voters approve the plan, the owner of a $300,000 house would pay about $38 more in taxes to the district next year. That homeowner is paying about $661 to fund the district this year, a decrease as the district recently paid off a previous loan.
At that rate, that homeowner would pay just more than $3 a month to update and modernize the district's vehicles and equipment. It seems a small price to pay for the peace of mind of knowing firefighters and paramedics will be equipped to answer the call.
We recommend voting yes on the Bloomingdale Fire Protection District's tax increase request.