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Tax proposed for new fire truck

Kyle Moroney • Jul 21, 2015 at 11:27 AM

The Township Board on Monday debated about replacing its main fire engine with a more expensive, but more efficient quint-type fire truck — or continue with a traditional engine.

“You have to decide what’s the best type of apparatus to serve the township from now and into the future,” Township Manager Bill Cargo said.

After much discussion, board members unanimously voted on going with the quint at the cost of $725,000. The board also decided to designate $400,000 in the township’s general fund for the truck.

The board discussed creating a townshipwide special assessment district or having a special millage request to cover the remaining $325,000. On Monday, board members said they would rather see the request on a ballot.

There are two millage options that the board will be considering: a one-year, 0.62 mill that would cost taxpayers with a $100,000 home $31; or a two-year, 0.31 mill that would cost taxpayers $15.50 each year.

The millage request is expected to be on the Aug. 7 ballot.

“For something that’s going to last 30 years, it’s going to be pretty minimal,” Fire Chief Tom Gerencer said, explaining that the Fire Department Fund has a $150,000 fund balance and “just keeps us afloat.”

The quint-type fire truck is a 75-footer that has a pump, water tank, fire hose, aerial device and ground ladders, according to Gerencer. Its apparatus is more agile and less expensive than a traditional aerial platform truck, and it will allow for less staff needed on the truck.If the millage is approved in August, township officials said they expect to put it out for bid immediately and hope to order it by November. If the ballot issue fails, then it could be put on the ballot again in November.

To read more of this story, see today’s print or e-edition of the Grand Haven Tribune.

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