MISSOULA – Voters approved a levy to boost funding for the Missoula Rural Fire District on Tuesday evening.
The unofficial results show the request for an additional $1.4 million per year in funding has passed by a 53%-to-47% margin — 3,455 votes in favor and 3,119 opposed.
The levy will allow “24-7” coverage by increasing staff at all five of the department’s five stations. Right now, that isn’t possible, and it presents some challenges, especially with Advanced Life Support, or during our wildfire season. The funds would allow for the hiring of 10-additional firefighter/EMTs.
The mill levy will cost just under $80 per year on a value of $200,000 — based on taxable value, which is 75% of the market value. The increase on a home with a tax-assessed value of $100,000 will be approximately $40 per year.
The mill levy is designed to help MRFD deal with the impacts of increasing growth, over a sprawling district that covers everything from Lolo and the Northern Bitterroot to the canyons north of Missoula and up the Highway 200 Corridor.