Archive for November 11th, 2022

Oswego Fire Protection District news

Excerpts from

Voters rejected an Oswego Fire Protection District referendum that sought a 1 percent tax increase. With all 40 precincts counted, the question received 9,362 “yes” votes, or 46.78 percent, and 10,651 “no” votes, or 53.22 percent, according to the Kendall County Clerk’s Office.

The fire department’s board of trustees unanimously voted Aug. 8 to place the question on voters’ General Election ballots after it failed to pass by one vote in June’s primary election. It was the third attempt to pass the “rescue” tax increase.

“The Board of Trustees have concluded that without the 0.10 percent rescue tax and significant rise in call volume, we will not be able to provide the level of service we provide today,” officials said in August. “Ambulance availability will continue to decrease, and response times will increase. Our staff and trustees find this unacceptable and are seeking the increased funding in the best interests of our community.”

“The Board feels that this issue is so important and since it was so close, the decision to move forward a third time was approved,” fire officials said in an Aug. 10 news release.

The tax was needed to provide additional money to maintain services, cover the cost of apparatus and equipment, and supplement operating costs, which have outpaced current funding.

If the referendum would have been approved, the increase would have cost homeowners $33 per year for every $100,000 of a home’s market value, which translates to a $99 per year increase for the owner of a $300,000 home.

Officials cited an increase in call volume, given population growth, as the reason for the proposed hike. The district — which covers all of Oswego, as well as parts of Plainfield, Montgomery, Yorkville, and Will and Kendall counties — has grown from 27,000 residents in 2002 to a current 70,000.

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Evanston Fire Department news

Excerpts from the

Monté Dillard and Heath Howe have both become Evanston Fire Department chaplains since the summer of 2020. Their work is multi-faceted, but centers around building relationships with members of the Evanston Fire Department. Along with other responsibilities, this requires visiting the firehouses and arriving at the scene during crises.

Part of their role as chaplains is also to comfort victims. This isn’t a task naturally built into the jobs of other fire department members. It’s common for the chaplains to follow up with members of the fire department and victims of situations, at times even making hospital visits.

While fire department staff and victims know about the chaplain’s support network, they can choose how much to engage with them. The chaplains said they seek to provide support to whoever needs it across all cultures. 

Dillard and Howe filled a vacancy left by Howe’s late husband, David Jones, who served as the department’s chaplain from 2011 until his passing in 2020.

After Jones’ passing, former fire chief Brian Scott asked Howe if she would be interested in taking up the role. While Jones performed the work as a retiree, Howe worked full time as an Episcopalian priest, which made her nervous about the time commitment.

Howe is the rector of Church of the Holy Comforter in Kenilworth and Dillard serves as senior pastor at First Church of God Christian Life Center in Evanston. Dillard said working together allows them to best serve the fire department, their congregations, and each other. 

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New engine for Algonquin-Lake in the Hills Fire District (more)

This from Tyler Tobolt:

Algonquin – Lake in the Hills FPD Engine Co. 142 
2022 Pierce Enforcer PUC 1500/750 
Not in service yet; #TylerTobolt; #FireTruck; #Pierce; #Enforcer; #PUC; #Algonquin-LakintheHillsFPD;

Tyler Tobolt photo

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