Here’s the release from Douglas County:
Five rural Douglas County fire protection districts that respond to incidents in the Pike National Forest area received needed funds to help them manage wildland fires, medical emergencies or structure fires.
These five fire districts were awarded $100,000 in federal funds by the Board of Douglas County Commissioners. The districts will use the money over the course of the year to update wildland fire equipment, purchase new rescue equipment, pay for training and improve their communication mechanisms.
“Volunteers and staff from these fire districts are often the first responders on an incident in the Pike National Forest,” said Douglas County Commissioner and Board Chair Roger Partridge. “Consistent with the Board of County Commissioners Public Safety priority, we work in partnership with these districts as we prepare for and respond to incidents within Douglas County. We recognize how important this funding is to their ability to protect and serve.”
Money was distributed to the five agencies, based on the number of calls they made during the year, at an average of $675 per call. Awards were as follows:
Jackson 105 Fire Protection District: $21,620 (32 calls) Larkspur Fire Protection District: $4,745 (7 calls) Mountain Communities Volunteer Fire Protection District: $29,045 (43 calls) North Fork Fire Protection District: $22,295 (33 calls) West Douglas Fire Protection District: $22,295 (33 calls)
Douglas County — like many other local governments that have non-taxable federal lands within their boundaries — receives a Payment in Lieu of Taxes (PILT) annually from the federal government to help offset losses in property taxes spent on the utilization of County services on non-taxable federal lands.
Beginning in 2002, Douglas County designated a portion of its PILT money to provide supplemental funding for the five rural fire districts.