Letter | Nostalgia must take back seat to emergency service progress and safety

Dear Editor,

On April 23, voters in Fall City have an opportunity to decide the future of how fire and emergency services are funded and administered.

A merger of Fire District 27 and Fire District 10 would expand and stabilize fire department operations, ensuring that personnel, equipment, training and safety meet the standards that are met elsewhere across King County and beyond.

As a member of Eastside Fire and Rescue, Fire District 10 has access to the many benefits a large fire department provides, while still offering a “small town” feel in smaller areas such as Carnation and North Bend.

Some citizens are concerned that Fall City would lose its voice in District 10, however that would only happen if no local residents cared enough to run for the often-unopposed fire commissioner spots. For the large majority of taxpayers, better service comes with a reduced cost, under a taxing structure that is more fairly calculated.

The contributions of previous volunteer firefighters who served this community for many years will never be forgotten. As a community, we would rightfully oppose a Starbucks taking over a family owned coffee shop or a QFC knocking out the Farmhouse Market. But when it comes to emergency services, when lives and property are at stake, nostalgia must take a back seat to progress and safety. The citizens of Fall City should demand that they receive the best fire and EMS service possible, and that service can be achieved via a merger with District 10.

Josh Yancey, 10-year member of Fall City Fire Department

[Letters do not represent the views of Living Snoqualmie. Letters about upcoming ballot initiatives and candidate elections can be emailed to info@livingsnoqualmie.com]

Comments

  1. David Geller says

    Excellent post. I agree with Josh’s thoughts completely. As a current volunteer FF with Eastside Fire & Rescue, and one that has transitioned through several incarnations of our program, I can assuredly say that volunteers will continue to play an important, respected and vital role within the department. Existing Fall City Volunteers would find a program that’s welcoming and engaging and utilizes and builds upon their existing fire and EMS skills. Eastside Fire & Rescue’s new Reserve FF program was designed specifically to satisfy a need for robust coverage in, currently, two pockets of the department’s response area. Reserve FFs currently staff two of our stations and work alongside career FFs throughout the department. The program has been extremely successful and has helped drive consistent levels of training among its members, resulting in better and more effective patient care to the people we serve in of our community. It has also served as an excellent jumping-off point for those volunteers seeking careers as full-time firefighters. Living on the plateau, near the Duthie Hill Bike Park, my neighborhood is primarily served by ESFR units, but sometimes by responding Fall City personnel. I would like to know that the first responders coming to my home to help me and my family have received the best training possible and know that, logically, combining departments will allow Fall City firefighters and volunteers to benefit from the expansive training resources available to a larger organization and the entire South King County Fire Training Consortium.

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