The Crested Butte Fire Protection Dist. Needs Your Help
Please Vote "Yes" on 5A
You may have heard that the Crested Butte Fire Protection District (CBFPD) is asking for a mill levy increase on the November 7th ballot. But why should Crested Butte residents vote "Yes" on Issue 5A?
We've all felt it, Crested Butte is growing, and fast. Crested Butte has seen seen significant growth of over 26% in residency in the past 15 years. Tourism is also up 60% since 2007. With that the CBFPD has seen a significant increase in emergency call volume as well. In order to maintain their high level of life saving emergency services, the CBFPD needs to be financially prepared to hire additional Paramedic/Firefighters, construct affordable housing for our volunteers and staff, and replace aging engines and equipment.
Why do we need to hire Paramedics and Firefighters you might ask? Aren't we a volunteer department? Our situation reflects a national trend whereby volunteerism in emergency services is declining. We have 50% fewer volunteers than we did 10 years ago while the number of full time residents and visitors to our community continues to grow each year. We can no longer rely solely on volunteers to provide essential Fire and EMS services to the community.
The Crested Butte Community has enjoyed the economy of a volunteer fire and ambulance service since 1974. As the community has grown, so have the demands on our valued volunteers who respond to over 612 calls each year, up from just 391 in 2001. That’s an increase of over 56%. While our goal is to maintain our volunteer system, the district has had to hire additional paid staff in order to maintain their high level of life saving services and to meet the needs of our community.
So why a tax increase? The Crested Butte Fire Protection District is considered a Special District. Special Districts do not receive any sales tax revenue; therefore, the CBFPD has not benefited financially in the short term from the increased sales tax generated by increased tourism. However, the increased visitation has increased the demand for Fire and EMS services.
The CBFPD is asking for a mill levy increase of 3.5 mils. The annual cost for Issue 5A is calculated as $25 per $100,000 of residential property value. That breaks down to $2.08 a month per $100,000 for residential property owners towards quality life saving emergency services.
Please vote "Yes" on 5A this November 7th!