Grayslake fire protection district referendum november 2014
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Grayslake Fire Protection District Referendum November 2014 - PowerPoint PPT Presentation

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Grayslake Fire Protection District Referendum November 2014. Grayslake Volunteer Fire Department. Formed December 26 th ,1899. Grayslake Fire Protection District. Formed in 1976 Separate taxing body from the Village of Grayslake Currently ~ 32,000 residents

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Grayslake Fire Protection District Referendum November 2014

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Grayslake Fire Protection DistrictReferendum November 2014

Grayslake Volunteer Fire Department

  • Formed December 26th,1899

Grayslake Fire Protection District

  • Formed in 1976

  • Separate taxing body from the Village of Grayslake

  • Currently ~ 32,000 residents

  • Serving Fremont Township, Gages Lake, Grayslake, Highland Lake, Round Lake Beach, Round Lake Park, Third Lake, Unincorporated Grayslake and Wildwood

Current Staffing

  • 39 Career Firefighter/Paramedics which includes seven contract Firefighter/Paramedics

  • Administrative Assistant

  • 25 Part time Firefighters

Emergency Response Facilities

  • Three Fire Stations

Emergency Responses in 2013

We Will Approach 4000 Calls in 2014!

Responsibilities of the Fire District

  • First and foremost is to provide immediate Emergency Medical Services and Fire Suppression to our District residents, business owners and visitors!

Other Areas of Responsibility

  • Building Plan Reviews

  • Fire Inspections

  • Public Education

  • Specialized Responses

    • Haz-Mat and Chem Bio

    • Water Rescue (Rescue, Recovery, Swiftwater, and Sonar)

    • Technical Rescue (Collapse, confined space, High angle, Trench)

    • Wildland

Resident Assistance

  • Citizen Assists

  • In home fire inspections

  • In home hazard identification for residents 65 and older or under 65 with a disability

  • Smoke and carbon monoxide detector installation (Funded through Grants)

  • Any other safety concerns

Basically our unofficial Credo is…….

We Will Do Anything For Anyone At Anytime

  • Our staff feel very strongly about providing excellent service regardless of the need to all of our residents.

  • We are very blessed to have such a talented group of individuals working in our community.

  • This is very important when you

    have no one else to call!

Why are we now asking for a tax increase, what changed?

Property values in the District have decreased 31.5% since the passage of the last referendum six years ago!

Critical Financial Issue

  • Total tax monies approved through the tax extension by the voters in 2009 was $6,032,521.76.

  • Because of the flat limiting rate and decline in EAV’s the tax monies in 2011 decreased to $4,836,780.11.

  • This equated to a drop of nearly 20% of the major revenue source to the District.

  • Even today, we received 10% less revenue than was voter approved in 2009 yet costs have dramatically increased.

Where should the District Be Financially?

  • Based on minimal increase and not even including any new growth, the tax money received by the district would have been $6,659,904. The new property growth calculation would have made even slightly more.

  • It is obvious the District has done everything to reduce costs and keep taxpayer costs as low as possible!

Basically tax money would be 20% higher in 2014 based on what taxpayers approved in 2008!

Our Major Funding Issue

  • We are very limited in funding streams. The major revenue comes from property tax. We also receive ambulance transport fees, fire billing, plan review and inspection fees, grant opportunities, and a small amount of monies donated by various community members

  • .

Some Creative Ways Costs are Kept Down


  • Lake McHenry Counties Specialized Response Team

  • Northwest Lake County Training Cooperative

  • Intergovernmental Agreements for shared responses

  • Shared Dispatch Center

  • Grants Awarded - $2,320,650 to date!

Unfortunately in the lifesaving business, budget cuts can mean the difference between life and death

  • Where do you further reduce costs?

    • Staff

    • Equipment

    • Payroll

    • Services

    • All have negative consequences to the safety of our District taxpayers, our firefighter/paramedics, and our overall community Health!

It is Important to Remember..

  • A heart attack happens to an oxygen deprived heart. Just like brain cells die without oxygen, so does heart muscle tissue. The longer it takes to reverse this event, the more irreplaceable heart tissue dies

  • After eight minutes an unconscious, non-breathing person has little chance for survival

  • Fires can double in size approximately every 30 - 60 seconds. After eight minutes a fire has grown by 64 times and flashover is near. Once flashover has taken place there is no chance for survival

Fast Responses by Paramedics and Firefighters are key to reducing death and saving property!

Positive Accomplishments

  • Decreased the ISO insurance rating from a “4” to a “3” which decreased insurance premiums for some homeowners and businesses.

  • Built a third station to decrease response times to the Southwest Area of the District.

  • Renovated headquarters fire station to be compliant with life safety codes and ADA requirements.

  • Renegotiated several contractual obligations to decrease operational costs.

  • Hired seven contract firefighter/paramedics to increase staffing yet keep District financial obligation lower. These personnel augment career staff.

  • Developed additional Automatic Response Agreements with neighboring agencies to collaboratively respond to specific emergencies thereby reducing our responding District apparatus and equipment. This allows our staff to respond to multiple calls as they routinely happen.

  • Through an Intergovernmental Agreement we receive a per inspection fee from the Village of Grayslake to perform fire and safety inspections of businesses located in the Village.

  • Instituted charging non-residents for responses to certain technical emergencies such as fires and hazardous materials.

  • Increased ambulance transport fees yet still working with residents to accept only insurance payments and not balance billing.

  • Continue to utilize part time staff daily to augment full time staff to respond to emergencies.

Issues We Need To Address

  • Aging Fleet – Ambulance, Engine, Command Unit

  • Employee Salaries/Labor Contract

  • Other Personnel Cost Increases

  • Legal Expenses

  • Staffing - Career/Part Time/ Contract

  • Increase in Insurance Costs – Health, Life, Work Comp, Property/Casualty

  • Utility Expense Increases

  • Low Reserve Fund Balances

  • Safety and PPE Replacement

Current Apparatus

Industry Standard

Ambulances -7 Yrs. Frontline

Engines - 10 Yrs. Frontline

Ladders - 15 Yrs. Frontline

Tender/Brush – Depends on Use

Staff/Utility Vehicles – 7 Yrs.

Clearly We Utilize All Of An Emergency Vehicles Lifespan in Grayslake!

Grayslake Fire

Ambulances – 8Yrs. Frontline

Engines – 15 Yrs. Frontline

Ladders – 25 Yrs. Frontline

Tender/Brush 25 Yrs. Frontline

Staff/Utility – 8 Yrs.

How Do We Compare With Other Fire Districts?

If successful, the tax paid per resident overall will be $203.77. Still far less than the County average!

How is the 2014 Referendum Question Structured?

  • Shall the limiting rate under the Property Tax Extension Limitation Law for the Grayslake Fire Protection District, Lake County, Illinois, be increased by an additional amount equal to 0.16% above the limiting rate for the purpose of fire and emergency services for levy year 2013 and be equal to 0.973% of the equalized assessed value of the taxable property therein for levy year 2014?

What will a Successful Referendum Bring to the District?

  • The approximate amount of taxes extendable at the most recent extended limiting rate is $5,513,263, and the approximate amount of taxes extendable if the proposition is approved is $6,598,285.

    • This number is almost certain to be lower.

What is the Cost to the Taxpayer?

  • For the 2014 levy year (Monies received for Fiscal Year 2015-2016), the approximate amount of the additional tax extended for a home worth $100,000 is estimated to be $53.33.

    • This equates to $4.44 per month or 14 cents per day.

What Will Happen If Approved?


  • Address ongoing and increasing financial obligations.

  • Replace Aging Apparatus

  • Ensure adequate staffing is in place to respond to emergencies and plan for growth.

  • Continue to meet the service demands and plan strategically for the increases seen in call volume. Emergency Call volume has increased by over 16.5% since 2009.

  • In 2013 the District responded to 3,671 calls for service.

  • Increase our community paramedicine program and ensure all of our residents are taken care of. We are here for our residents!

If Not Approved……

  • We will be back on the ballot in April 2015! Even if approved by voters then, we will not see the funding until 2016. This problem will not go away!

  • Re-evaluate staffing and operating three stations 24/7 and adjust as necessary.

  • Community involvement, fire prevention and public education programs may be severely altered.

  • Aging fleet will continue to be operated utilizing increased monies for maintenance and repairs.

  • Service demands for non-emergency assistance to residents may decrease.

Bottom line is…….

  • We cannot continue current operations on limited funding. The dollar amount approved by voters in 2008 was only seen once in 2009.

  • Current services and staffing levels may be altered if not successful.

  • We need everyone’s help to get the correct message out to the taxpayers for them to make an educated decision at the polls. Public support must be there from the onset.


  • We are here for the citizens and visitors to our District 24 hours a day 365 days a year and are committed to providing exemplary emergency services to everyone!

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