Letters to the Editor

Your views in 200 words or less

Tag: West Pierce Fire & Rescue


ELECTION: Preserve West Pierce services

West Pierce Fire Fighters would like to encourage the citizens of University Place and Lakewood to support the Fire District’s renewal of the maintenance and operations special levy on Aug. 6.

This two-year special levy replaces the existing levy and will ensure the current level of high-quality service 911 callers receive today for two more years.

The fire district has worked diligently to keep costs contained while providing a necessary and continually increasing level of service to our community. This special levy is crucial to West Pierce Fire District in order to continue meeting the community’s emergency service needs.


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911: Proposition 1 is a sensible solution

I have been a fire service professional for 35 years and currently serve as the fire chief of West Pierce Fire & Rescue. I support Proposition 1 because I’ve seen firsthand how poor communications can wreak havoc on an emergency scene, putting first responders and citizens at risk. I believe it would be irresponsible to allow our patchwork system of six dispatch centers and six radio systems to continue, when Proposition 1 serves as a sensible solution that will create a single, integrated, state of the art system.

Proposition 1 is endorsed by a broad range of emergency service professionals

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PROPOSITION 1: Help us help you

Re: “The case for South Sound 911″ (Other Views, 10-16).

I have been a firefighter in Pierce County for 30 years at Lakewood Fire Department which is now West Pierce Fire & Rescue. I am in support of Proposition 1. This is due to the critical need for a broad update and revamping of the coordination and communication between fire crews and fire departments, including fire and police agencies.

The News Tribune recently ran an article in support of Proposition 1, and it mentioned an incident involving firefighters and the loss of communication during an explosion and subsequent house

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911: Past time to upgrade system

I work for West Pierce Fire and Rescue as a 911 dispatch supervisor. I have worked in the field for over 25 years.

1. Despite what the “No” campaign would have you believe, there are many dispatchers who support Proposition 1. My own guild and IAFF Local 31 have voted to endorse the proposition. We represent over 95 percent of the fire and EMS dispatchers in Pierce County.

2. Our facilities are severely overtaxed. They were never designed to support the power drain we place on them today. The simple act of plugging in a vacuum cleaner has taken my

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UPLACE: Understanding the levy ballot measure

It was nice to see additional information in The News Tribune regarding Fire Protection District No. 3 (West Pierce Fire & Rescue). To provide some focus to homeowners in University Place, I add the following:

University Place homeowners’ tax for fire services is the second largest tax on our tax bill.

The total current tax for fire services in University Place is $2.87 per $1,000 of assessed value. This overall tax actually has three components: $1.50 for fire services, 50 cents for emergency medical services and a special levy of 87 cents.

This new levy will raise the current 87-cent charge

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UPLACE: Support West Pierce Fire & Rescue levy

University Place always prioritizes and supports what we value. When our recreation, schools, police or fire department needs us, we are there. Why does our community support these entities? We trust that they clearly understand what our community identifies as being important. They continue to provide the level of servies that we desire, with an open door policy to the public of sensible, reliable and dependable fiscal responsibility.

The fire department supports our events through sponsorship of teams and scholarships, as well as attendance and participation for Duck Daze, UP Festival and Christmas Tree Lighting just to name a few. They

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UPLACE: Justify fire district levy request

While we all need fire protection and emergency services support, the current levy requests seems unjustified, with an absence of supporting financial information on the district’s operations and expenses.

Ten percent of Pierce County taxpayers are out of work. University Place taxpayers already have the highest tax rate in Pierce County. The Consumer Price Index has been flat or negative for the last three years, and the average home has lost more than 12.5 percent in value.

Arguing that district revenues are falling with declining home values and therefore homeowners need to approve another excess levy for full district funding

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WEST PIERCE: Now it’s public’s turn to act

Property taxes continue to rise. But I encourage residents to carefully consider the West Pierce Fire & Rescue (formerly University Place and Lakewood fire departments) request to renew their operations levy that funds over one quarter of essential services.

As a 32-year veteran in the fire service and an international fire services leader, I have worked with fire departments across the nation. In fact, I have been asked to conduct multiple critical assessments of fire service organizations seeking professional accreditation. West Pierce has taken many steps toward positioning itself as one of these elite organizations.

Over the past years, consider

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