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EMS levy gets voters' support

It’s not official yet, but it appears the Bainbridge Island Fire Department EMS levy will pass overwhelmingly.

As of Thursday, 73.63 percent of the voters approved the levy, with a super-majority of 60 percent required for its approval.

With 8,492 votes counted, 6,253 voted yes while 2,239 voted against the measure.

“We felt confident going in because of our strategic planning and the support at the ballot box was expected because of the comments we had received,” said Bainbridge Island Fire Chief Hank Teran.

“The most satisfying part of this whole experience is that when we went to the public it was very clear that they had a very positive feeling about the service and professionalism of our members.”

Teran said the department’s first action will be to hire three EMT firefighters before the end of the year. He said the department has an active list of nine potential firefighters at this time.

BIFD plans to staff Station 22 on Bucklin Hill Road early next year; it will wait until 2013 to staff its Phelps Road fire station. A potential paramedic also will be sent to school next year.

If the proposition is approved, the county will impose a regular property tax levy of 40 cents or less per $1,000 of assessed valuation for a period of 10 consecutive years beginning in 2009 for collection in 2010.

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