Fire Service Fees Going Up

The City Commission voted yes Wednesday evening to increase fire services fees, but not for everyone.

Sometime this July, City of Tallahassee utility customers will see an increase in their utility bills.

Steve Anderson, Tallahassee Fire Chief, says, "The fire services fee that each citizen pays on the utility bill, this is an effort to better reach our budget."

The results of a new consultant study shows the City of Tallahassee Fire Department is facing a deficit and an increase for the services will be necessary, but not for everyone.

Matt Matherne, a government service group consultant, says, "It's going to increase for single family residence, stay the same for multi-family residences. It's going to increase for commercial uses but decrease for industrial warehouses."

Single family residences will see an increase of less than $2 a month, and commercial users will see somewhere around eight percent.

Matt Matherne says, "It's necessary because it gives the Fire Department a dedicated source of revenue."

Steve Anderson adds, "It's essential, and I think the community wants the best service it can receive, and that's what we want to provide."

The consultant says utility customers can be assured the money will go directly to the Fire Department. The rate increase will start July 1 this year, and the money will be used for personnel and equipment.