Snohomish Regional Fire & Rescue operates under a balanced budget and has passed all its independent audits by the state. It funds daily operations with a fire levy and a levy for emergency medical service paid through property taxes. With voter approval, these levy rates are capped at a total of $2 per $1,000 of assessed property value ($1.50 for fire and $0.50 for EMS). When a levy rate falls, we ask our community to return it to the original amount. These "lid lifts" help us keep up with higher call volumes and increasing costs to provide service.
Voters supported returning the fire levy to $1.50 per $1,000 in 2021 Fire Levy Lid Lift. This funding will be used to hire additional firefighters, two fire inspectors and a medical services officer. It also will improve firefighter training programs, and complete two or three fire station projects. Improvements like these are important as we seek accreditation by the Center for Public Safety Excellence's Commission. This process assesses everything that the Fire District does from emergency response to financial stewardship. There are currently 292 accredited agencies, seven of which are in Washington, serving approximately 12% of the US population. Accredited agencies have better save rates for fire and EMS calls. It also could improve our risk rating, which is linked to what you pay in homeowner insurance premiums.