Candidate believes taxes should fund fire basics

Editor,

My name is T.J. Lamont and I am asking for your vote in November for North Whidbey Fire and Rescue Commissioner Position 1.

I was a commissioner of NWF&R for 12 years, leaving office in 2012. I worked with both commissioners Goen and Koorn since 1980. That’s when we all started as firefighters.

I have looked at the budget and can see where we can work together to make some adjustments in spending so we can get back to paying cash for future purchases.

I believe the primary focus should be on firefighting equipment and personnel training. This is what your taxes are designated to be used for.

This is for fire engines, firefighting equipment and personnel training.

Once we have these items covered and we have extra funds then we can look at providing additional services such as water rescue, cliff rescue and EMS.

I am not advocating discontinuing these services immediately or even at all. I’m saying let’s get our priorities straight first. Taxpayers are already paying the sheriff for water rescue and cliff rescue and the hospital for EMS services, so why should we pay twice?

I think the fire commissioners should prioritize their needs and fire services should be on the top of their list. If there are enough funds to help in other areas that’s great.

We definitely need these other services and the fire department is doing a great job providing them, but we need to face reality and get back to our primary responsibilities. If the sheriff or hospital need more money for their programs, they can ask the taxpayers for a levy increase or to approve a bond.

I want your tax dollars to be utilized properly.

T. J. Lamont

Oak Harbor

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