North Routt says ‘yes’ to fire district |

North Routt says ‘yes’ to fire district

Danie Harrelson

— North Routt residents can feel a little safer in the future.

Residents in the North Routt Fire Protection District on Tuesday voted 215 to 48 to approve a property tax increase that will be used to build a new fire station near Steamboat Lake and purchase badly needed equipment. The tax increase, the district’s first since its creation in 1981, will back up to $1.25 million in bonds to help fund the $2 million project.

“It enhances the ability of the volunteers to provide fire and emergency protection to the residents and guests of the fire district,” North Routt Fire Protection District Board President Chuck Vale said. Aging emergency vehicles that cannot respond as quickly to fire and ambulance calls will also be replaced with one new ambulance and one new fire truck.

Routt County has agreed to fund $150,000 of the project’s cost in exchange for the right to store county road equipment, including a snowplow in winter, at the new fire station.

The district will pay $90,000 toward the project and anticipates a $250,000 cash donation from a landowner in the district and $325,000 in grants. The new station will not force the closure of the current fire station in Clark, but it will help defray the burden the district’s growing population has placed on the current station.

Much of the current growth is centered 15 miles away from the Clark station, which was built 30 years ago when much of the population lived around Clark.

The election was limited to residents who live in the 441-square-mile district and property owners who live elsewhere in the state.

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