Snohomish Regional Fire & Rescue

Fire Levy Information

Fire Levy Lid Lift Banner

What we do:

We provide fire suppression and emergency medical service (EMS) to 160,000 people in Lake Stevens, Monroe, and unincorporated southeast Snohomish County. We respond to an average of 16,000 calls a year, of which 85% percent are for emergency medical service (EMS). Our cardiac "save rate" is twice the national average.

We are accountable to our residents.

We operate under a balanced budget and have passed all independent audits by the state. In February 2023, we became the only fire agency in Snohomish County and just the eighth in the state to become an accredited fire agency through the Commission on Fire Accreditation International. This means we provide a higher level of emergency services while operating under the highest level of fiscal responsibility and accountability. This achievement was possible thanks to the ongoing support of our community.

How do we fund emergency services?

Daily operations are funded by a fire levy and EMS levy paid through property taxes. The fire levy rate is capped at $1.50 per $1,000 of assessed property value, and the EMS levy rate is capped at $0.50. Voters last approved a fire levy rate of $1.50 per $1,000 in 2021. Since then, the rate has dropped to $1.14.

Why did the levy rate drop?

Levy rates fall as property values rise to limit a fire district to approximately the same amount of revenue each year plus a one percent increase allowed by state law or any other voter-approved increase. This means the funding a fire district receives does not equate to assessed property value increases. This is called "levy compression" and is why fire districts must regularly ask voters for a "lid lift" to restore funding for emergency services.

What is a levy lid lift?

From time to time, we must ask voters to restore our fire levy. This is known as a levy lid lift, and it helps us keep up with costs to provide services. Voters approved a fire levy rate of $1.50 in 2021. Since then, the rate has dropped to $1.14.

The lid lift will reduce response times and improve service.

We are considering asking voters to approve a fire levy lid lift of $0.36 per $1,000 during the November 7, 2023, general election. The lid lift would return the rate to $1.50.

  • The $0.36 lid lift would::
    • Fill open positions for emergency personnel to improve service reliability across the district.
    • Rebuild Station 81 in Lake Stevens and relocate Station 32 in Monroe to allow for quicker response times in the area.
    • Replace lost funding due to changes in how the federal government reimburses fire districts for Medicare and Medicaid
    • patients.

What will this cost me?

The owner of a $600,000 home would pay an additional $18 per month or $216 per year.

Fire Chief Kevin O'Brien welcomes your questions at 360-794-7666 or .

Media Releases

  • None at this time

Commissioner Meetings