Camano Island Fire & Rescue Seeking to Renew Funding for Emergency Medical Services – Mar. 23, 2015

Camano Island Fire and Rescue is presenting an Emergency Medical Services (EMS) levy renewal in the August, 2015 primary election. The levy funds EMS services and must be renewed every 6 years. The current EMS levy was last approved by voters in 2009 and will expire at the end of this year.

The current levy rate is $0.50 per $1,000 of assessed value. The District is seeking to renew the levy at the same rate. This means that the owner of a home assessed at $260,000 (the average home value on Camano Island) would continue to pay $130 in taxes each year.

“We want to emphasize to our residents that we are not asking for a new levy or a levy increase,” said CIFR Chief Michael Schick. “This ballot is to renew our existing levy, which is expiring, enabling us to sustain the current level of emergency medical services to our community” he explained.

The EMS levy currently generates almost $1.5 million, nearly a third of the District’s annual budget. One hundred percent of Levy funds help to support EMS services including: purchasing medical supplies and equipment, medic units, training, and paramedic salaries.

The District responded to 1,828 calls for service in 2014; the highest number on Camano Island in recent history. Of these calls, 71.6% were for medical incidents. “EMS calls continue to represent our greatest need and we anticipate that trend continuing into the future,” said Schick. “The renewal of the EMS Levy is a critical part of meeting this need.”

To learn more, please download the Camano Island Fire and Rescue 2014 Annual Report and 2015 Budget from www.camanofire.com.