Residents interested in the proposed merger between the Lakewood and University Place fire districts can attend the first of two open house meetings tonight.
The meeting starts at 6 p.m. today at the Evergreen Primary School cafeteria in University Place, 7102 40th St. W.
On Jan. 25, the Lakewood Fire District Board of Commissioners voted in favor of a merger following a yearlong study of regionalization options. Central Pierce Fire & Rescue, East Pierce Fire & Rescue and South King Fire & Rescue made similar mergers.
In Lakewood and University Place, officials have been exploring ways to reduce costs. “It just makes sense to find areas where we can be successful collectively,” Lakewood Fire Chief Ken Sharp told The News Tribune last April.
But the potential merger has also prompted concerns of whether University Place, the smaller city, would receive the same level of service it does now.
The University Place Fire District posted a Q&A sheet regarding the proposed merger on its Web site.
Tonight is the first of two public open houses; the second is scheduled Feb. 16.