Mount Prospect, Elk Grove Twp. join in litigation against fire district
Mount Prospect and Elk Grove Township are seeking an injunction to prevent the financially strapped Elk Grove Rural Fire Protection District from selling its fire station, vehicles and equipment as it prepares to dissolve.
Mount Prospect Village Manager Michael Cassady said the goal of the litigation, filed Monday in Cook County, is to get the fire district to cooperate in the creation of a transition plan for fire protection and emergency services within unincorporated Elk Grove Township.
Township Supervisor George Busse agreed, saying, "Our overarching goal is to ensure the fire district's actions will not have a negative impact on the safety, health and well-being of our residents and businesses in this unincorporated area."
The fire district has started the process of selling Fire Station 11 at 1415 E. Algonquin Road in Mount Prospect and equipment, including a tanker.
Cassady called the fire district's actions "irresponsible and unlawful."
With a shrinking tax base as a result of annexations by neighboring communities, the fire district, which covers an area that includes such manufactured housing communities as Oasis and Willoway Terrace, is running out of money.
The fire district is also preparing to dissolve, a move that would require voter approval.
If the district dissolves, it must sell the assets, said Carlos Maldonado, president of the fire district board, adding that the board has a fiduciary responsibility to its taxpayers.
The litigation filed Monday is the latest chapter in a four-year saga, during which Mount Prospect and the fire district have been wrangling over an intergovernmental agreement to determine the future of fire protection in the area.