2018-05-03 / Local News

Fire millage renewal sought

In order to keep fighting fires in Leland Township, voters are being asked to support the renewal of a millage to pay for firefighting and equipment, as well as training for Leland Township Fire and Rescue Department.

Leland Township Supervisor Susan Och said the half-mill to be levied for four years is nothing new.

“This is a renewal of the fire equipment and training millage,” she said. “It is not a new tax, just a renewal, to fund our ambulances, fire fighting equipment, radios, turnout gear, etc.

“It also funds training for our personnel, enabling them to better serve our community.”

Leland Township voters have been supportive of the department in the past. This millage is essential to continue service to Leland Township residents and visitors.

Chief Daniel Besson said the community’s support of the millage is absolutely necessary.

“The millage request incorporates all of our equipment and training needs,” Besson said. “In order for us to help the community, we need the community to help us.”

Equipment funds allow the fire department to perform maintenance as as well as purchase new equipment. These funds also pay for maintenance like oil changes and new tires.

New equipment is included in the budget, said Besson.

This fiscal year, the department has budgeted $450,000 for the purchase of a used aerial (ladder) truck to be paid over six years. The budgeted amount includes any finance fees.

On the training side, Besson said the $40,000 allocation in this year’s budget will provide training for the seven fulltime and 16 part-time firefighters on staff. This amount reflects a $10,000 decrease from last year’s budget.

Required training is determined by OSHA, the National Fire Protection Association and insurance carriers. There is additional training required to maintain a medical license and Advanced Life Support.

According to Besson, these trainings can range from a two-day seminar to a six-month course.

If passed, the millage will be levied starting on December 1, 2018.

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