Excerpts from the ChicagoTribune.com:

The Newport Township Fire Protection District is again seeking a tax increase to upgrade equipment.

A referendum on the March 15 ballot will ask for .132 cents for every $100 of a home’s assessed market value — the same proposal that was defeated last year when it got only 44 percent of the vote. If the referendum passes, a person with a home valued at $100,000 would pay $43.75 per year to the district, Newport Fire Chief Mark Kirchhoffer said.

The chief said taxes have not been raised for the fire district in 23 years and the money is needed to replace equipment. He said home values in the township have dropped from $268,807,724 in 2009 to $188,752,091 in 2015, which means less revenue generated through taxes. That loss of about $80 million in taxable value has left the Newport Fire District with about $1.25 million in tax revenue and a $1.9 million budget.