Springfield Residents Could See Additional Fee This Summer - WMBB News 13 - The Panhandle's News Leader

Springfield Residents Could See Additional Fee This Summer

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The City of Springfield is in the market for six new firefighters, but the commission is still considering where the extra funds will come from.

The mayor and three out of four commissioners approved a special assessment at their regular meeting a week ago that could bring in more than enough money.

The Insurance Services Office told the city it would need the additional hires by June 1st to maintain it's fire safety rating.

The commission approved a special assessment after an almost three hour public hearing, where some residents questioned the numbers.

The additional hires will cost about $267,537. 

A special assessment collected from each property could bring in about $470,907.

That's more than needed, but Mayor Robert Walker says the city needs a new fire truck plus cushion for the various costs needed to employ firefighters.

"I hate to put any kind of burden on anyone else cause the economy and the way it is. We have a lot of senior citizens living in our city that are on fixed incomes, but we've got to do something, and this is the least expensive way to our citizens to do it," said Walker.

Commissioners are still looking at other options to bring in the funds, including volunteer firefighters and reviewing the current budget.

Mayor Walker says if they do collect the fee, the average property owner can expect their cost to be about $120 a year, with some people paying more or less depending on what's built on their property.

For more information and a database of what each property owner would pay, visit http://www.springfieldfl.org/fire-services-assessment.html.