Lyndon Fire Department needs financial assistance, and their Chief Russ Rakeshaw has three options. Currently Lyndon Fire Department is a KRS Chapter 75 fire protection district. They are a taxing district that collects 10% for personal property.
The Kentucky statute, originally written in 1944, set a cap on the tax of ten percent. There has been a growing problem in the state of fire departments that are coming up short financially. Lyndon is land locked. Most of the land available for development has already been developed, and there has not been a increase in the revenue for property in many years. Unfortunately for them, the cost of operating a fire department is increasing every year.
Chief Rakeshaw offered three options. The best option is to get the Kentucky legislature to increase the tax cap. Several departments have tried to get the ten percent cap increased for more than ten years without any success. No one wants to hear their representative voted to increase taxes.
Next is to add an ambulance. Yes, by adding an ambulance the Lyndon Fire Protection District can tax an additional 10% (increasing the total tax rate to a possible 20% for fire and EMS). I admire that the Chief openly admits that he does not want to run an ambulance service, he just needs the funds. Fire departments have used this rational to add ambulances to their service for a long time, but this is the first instance I know where the Chief admits the true reason, money.
The last and least favorable option is cutting personnel & services to reduce expenditures.
I understand the dire circumstance that Lyndon FD is in, this has been a problem for a few years in our area. Adding an ambulance is not the answer. If you live within the Lyndon Fire Protection District, call your state representative and ask them to change the tax cap.
Full Disclosure: I do not live within the boundaries of LFPD, nor do I work for them. The opinions are mine and not representative of any member or citizen in Lyndon.