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Emergency Services Cuts

October 17th, 2007 by Mike Vasilinda

Local fire and emergency units are at the Capitol lobbying to be saved from property tax cuts. Many of the states fire district rely almost exclusively on property taxes and spokesmen Ron Beasley of the Palm Beach County Fire and Rescue Squad says if lawmakers dont exempt them from the cuts, residents could suffer.

As a result of the last three percent cuts that we received, weve gotten extremely lean. Weve cut out all the extra stuff. We had a new growth, essentially is what were talking about for extra stuff. And we dont have a lot of room for extra cuts. Weve got some amendments going with the two chambers that would exclude the Independent special districts and special districts who are almost 100 percent or are highly dependent on taxes from effects of most of these cuts.

Beasley was asked what would happen if the efforts didn’t succeed? Were going to have some serious impacts on our firefighters, on the level of service for the citizens, and the level of safety all around. He says.

So far, lawmakers are concentrating on the big picture and have not addressed how or if the special districts should be spared.

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