New Lenox Fire Protection District referendum request aimed at improving safety
By Erin Gallagher Correspondent February 21, 2014 7:30PM
Updated: February 23, 2014 2:13AM
Better equipment for firefighters is one reason the New Lenox Fire Protection District is putting a tax increase referendum on the ballot March 18. If passed, the average household would see an increase of about $7 a month.
Since the last increase 25 years ago, the population has more than doubled and there are more businesses, said Joe Levey, district secretary and trustee. And, in the past three years, the call volume has increased at a rate of 15 percent each year.
If approved, the tax revenue would help cover ambulance services and also would be used to replace old equipment for firefighters. That would improve safety and response times, Levey said.
“If we get (the referendum passed), it means we are going to have a safer, higher quality of life for our residents,” Levey said.
The fire protection district includes portions of Mokena, Homer Township and Manhattan Township. It is larger than the village of New Lenox and is financed strictly through property taxes.
The current rate is 0.36 and is recommended to increase to 0.489, according to a news release.
“This would be the equivalent of approximately an extra $86 per year or $7 per month for a $200,000 home,” the release said.