Save Yourself - They Won't

   Does Lafayette need a fire district?


The City of Lafayette is putting together a tax package, just for you, to create a Fire District instead of providing it as a city service.



Here are some little factoids that I want you to keep in your mind.

The City of Lafayette is .9 square miles and has a payroll of $863,535. The City of Dayton is .7 square miles, same number of employees and their payroll $383,850. That is a difference of $380,00.00. Think about that.

Terry Lucich is the Fire Chief of both Lafayette and New Carlton Fire District. He is paid by both cities. He is also the chief budget officer for New Carlton Fire District. Requests for budget items from him have gone unanswered. I had to go through the county to get it.

New Carlton Fire District's service area is 36 square miles. Lafayette's service is area is .9.

According to a study paid for by the city, the perceived need for a new fire station is the driving force behind creating a fire district combining Lafayette and New Carlton Fire District.

The New Carlton Fire District is in debt, where the Lafayette Fire Department has no debt.

Here are the tax rates for the individual entities of cities in the county of similar size and structure. You can see that Carlton doesn't do that great a job of working with what they have and want to scoop Lafayette residents into that mess. Carlton residents are not happy that Lafayette residents want to come in and benefit from their years of contributing. So, it totally makes sense that we have Carlton residents build us a new fire center since it will not benefit them at all. You can also see where, in some cities, having a separate taxing district makes sense due to low city tax rate (which cannot be changed). For those cities that are clearly being taken advantage of? Maybe you should be more active in your local government.

Entity Name Tax Rate per $1,000.00 of property assessed value
Lafayette City 3.4857
New Fire Tax Unknown
Total Unknown
Dayton City 1.7057
Dayton FD 1.2302
Total 2.9359
Carlton City 5.0098
Carlton FD 1.05
Total 6.0598
Dundee City 2.3115
Dundee FD .558
Total 2.8695
Amity City 3.6105
Amity FD .8403
Total 4.4508
Sheridan 2.1307
Sheridan FD 1.1188
Total 3.2495
Yamhill City 3.7389
Yamhill FD .9081
Total 4.647


I have lived here for almost 8 years. The entire time, Terry has talked about doing this combination thing.

I, personally, will NOT be voting for it. But, if you choose to, here are some ideas that we can make lemonade out of lemons.

If we become a fire district, then all the city is offering us for services are is water and sewer. Who is to say that the fire district couldn't take that over and become all three? Then no need for a city anymore.

 Or, we get the fire district, then create a citizen's utility board to manage the water and sewer, and still get rid of the city. Then all we have is the fire district tax, the utility charges, and no city tax. And, the utilities would be regulated by the state, which sets maximums on rates and increases have to be approved.

So, as always, your choice. But, if you crunch the numbers, this should be a non starter for the people that are footing the bill.