A majority of Clackamas Fire District voters would support a potential levy that would increase personnel, support wildfire mitigation efforts and invest in quick response vehicles to improve response times, according to a new survey released by the district.
The results of the survey, which was commissioned by DHM Research, were presented to the Clackamas Fire District Board of Directors last week. The survey was conducted between November 28 and December 5 and probed voters’ opinions of a potential levy on the May 2023 ballot.
The survey found that support started at 50% and quickly jumped to 61% once voters were informed of the details: that the levy would fund 62 new full-time positions, including 24-7 staffing at two of Clackamas Fire District’s rural stations (Logan and Clarkes), and improve response times to fires and medical emergencies.
The district also wants the levy to fund alternative responses, to help free up larger equipment for the most serious calls, and wildfire responses. The proposed five-year local option levy would be for 52 cents per $1,000 of assessed valuation — the equivalent of about $138 per year for the average Clackamas Fire District homeowner.
“This research shows strong support for Clackamas Fire District and voters’ willingness to invest in this essential service,” said John Horvick, senior vice president at DHM Research. “By more than a 2 to 1 margin, voters said they would vote for the levy once they heard about its benefits to the community.
“They support the levy because they believe everyone needs a fast response when emergencies strike, no matter where you live in the community.”
Results showed that voters favor a levy that would fund additional firefighters and first responders in all parts of the district to help prevent dangerous wildfires from spreading and ensure fast responses to medical emergencies.
“As your fire chief, I’m committed to listening to the public, whom we serve, and it’s clear that voters are supportive of our efforts to increase the number of firefighters on our force through a potential levy,” said Clackamas Fire Chief Nick Browne.
“We are dedicated to investing in wildfire mitigation efforts, ensuring our stations are fully staffed with career firefighters, and that our response times remain strong.”
At the board work session on January 9, Browne also outlined the Clackamas Fire District’s efforts to conduct outreach about the potential levy to the public, local businesses and other community partners, which has been ongoing since last year.
For more information about the proposed levy, visit the Clackamas Fire website at clackamasfire.com.
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