Merge would triple fire district
Whatcom County Fire District 13 will almost triple in size next year if a merger with district 3 proposed last week by the North Whatcom Fire and Rescue Service (NWFRS) meets with voter approval next November.
NWFRS administrators said that it would save costly duplications in service. It will also raise the levy rate in both districts, by 10 percent in district 3 and by a penny in district 13, because to be legal both merging districts must be taxed at the same levy rate.
Were the measure to be voted down, district 13 taxpayers would still be asked for an increase to offset increased demands for service due to rapid growth, said NWFRS chief Tom Fields.
NWFRS originally served three districts until district 5 (Point Roberts) elected to drop out, leaving the two remaining districts with two levels of management that some saw as excessive.