Marion Fire Department wants upgrades to ailing fire station

Marion Fire Department

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An antiquated building and aging equipment are just two of the reasons the City of Marion Fire Department is asking City Council to consider placing a levy on November general election ballot.

Chief Chuck Deem presented the levy proposal to council’s finance committee on May 2 and the committee voted 3-0 to forward the measure to the full council for consideration at the meeting on Monday, May 9. If approved by city council, the 2.75 mill continuing levy will be placed on the ballot for the Nov. 8 election.

“This property tax levy is for taking care of capital needs of the fire department,” Deem told members of the Finance Committee. “The intent with this money is to replace Station 1 (186 S. Prospect St.), which celebrates its 110th anniversary this year. Also, this will allow us to put our rolling stock (fire trucks, EMS vehicles, etc.) on a regular replacement schedule, which means fire apparatus would be replaced every 15 years, which meets the NFPA (National Fire Protection Association) Standard 1901. We replace medics (EMS vehicles) every nine years and there’s money in there for staff vehicles.

“There’s also money in there for updating and improving Stations 2 (1069 Bellefontaine Ave.) and 3 (599 Jefferson St.). During the timeframe in the paperwork that I’ve given you, both of those stations will reach their 50-year anniversaries.”

Deem said according to information provided by the Marion County Auditor’s Office, the levy will generate $1,076,982.97 annually. For the owner of a home valued at $100,000, the levy would cost them $96.25 per year.

It’s estimated that the proposed 20,000 square foot, single-level fire station will cost approximately $9 million to build, Deem said. The proposed new site for the station is land that the city owns adjacent to OhioHealth Marion General Hospital, where soccer fields are currently located. 

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