Fox River fire district seeks voter support to increase property taxes

Homeowners in the Fox River and Countryside Fire/Rescue District will decide if they want to pay more property taxes for new equipment, fire trucks and a third fire station to meet increasing demand.

A referendum seeking $13 million will appear on the ballot in the June 28 primary election. If the request is approved, the owner of a $300,000 home would pay about $130 more in property taxes to the district.

In a news release, district officials said the referendum comes as a result of increased demand for services from an aging population and new growth in the district. The district also needs to replace aging equipment, they said.

"The district has reached a crucial point," Fox River and Countryside Fire/Rescue District Chief Bert Lancaster said in the news release. "We have made the most of the resources available to us during this period of growth, but we will need to act now to ensure the current and future needs of the community are met."

The fire district serves unincorporated areas of St. Charles and Campton townships and the villages of Wayne and Campton Hills. The district includes more than 35,000 residents in a 38-square-mile area.

If approved, the funds from the bond issue would cover the purchase of new vehicles, new gear and a centrally located third fire station. The district would also upgrade two existing fire stations to help reduce response times.

In addition, the district plans to refinance existing debt obligations to free dollars that could then be used for hiring new staff and training and retaining existing staff, according to the news release.

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