MO voters approve tax to pay for fire protection - KFVS12 News & Weather Cape Girardeau, Carbondale, Poplar Bluff

MO voters approve tax to pay for fire protection

(Source: KFVS) (Source: KFVS)
LEOPOLD, MO (KFVS) -

Voters in Leopold, Missouri overwhelmingly approved a tax to pay for a fire protection district.

The Leopold Fire Department was at risk of closing their doors, but now that it’s tax supported their budget will more than double.

The new property tax would bring in about $35,000 a year, allowing them to buy new gear, hire on first responders and incorporate more training.

Captain Chris Mcwilliams said the department’s biggest problem is that one of their engines doesn’t pump water quick enough and will sometimes die while out on calls, jeopardizing how quick they can put out the flames.

When it came to their previous budget, Mcwilliams said it would hardly cover their bills with little room for unexpected expenses.  

 “You’re left with pennies," McWilliams said. "If someone was to get hurt or pay for workman’s compensation anything like that. You still got gas to heat the buildings, power to keep the electric on, the trucks to get batteries charged. We can’t do anything else, and can’t get anything new.”

The issue passed by 131 votes.

The change would also improve Leopold’s ISO rating, giving homeowners living in the district lower insurance rates that would go into effect in 2017.

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