Jackson County Commissioners are setting guidelines for a possible fire assessment. The county is looking to improve fire services and ultimately help rural homeowners' insurance ratings. In the last 30 years, JacksonCounty has grown and changed but one thing has remained the same, county fire stations. Now commissioners are looking into an assessment fee to bring stations up to current standards. "The board has to consider right now the recommendation is between $49.00 and $51.00 per year per property." said CountyCommissioner, Jeremy Branch. “A percentage fee will be assessed for commercial businesses.”
The county currently has three fire stations and all three are in need of upgrades. Jackson County Fire and Rescue Station 1 sits within Marianna city limits and needs to be relocated. Another department is located in Campbellton uses an old FEMA trailer. The third station is home in Alford, its an old gas station converted to a fire station.
With assessment funding, the county would be equip to make improvements ultimately impacting insurance ratings."Stations, equipment that we've got and manpower are really the key items,” said Jackson County Fire and Rescue, Chief Scott Birge. “To be able to provide all of that with a return goal, in that the people calling for our service are given a better insurance rating would be beneficial."
The Jackson County Commission will have a public hearing on the assessment at 6:15 Tuesday, June 24th. Branch says the fee is subject to change and nothing is set in place yet.