Penn Plan Pricey

Firefighters in Penn Township may be fighting an uphill battle, in pushing a property tax increase to expand the department.

A series of public hearings on the plan wrapped up on Tuesday night.

The expansion plan has been put on hold for now, while the township starts talks on a possible merger with neighboring departments.

The big concern is the cost of a plan that calls for hiring 31-new firefighters,

According to Jeffrey Dean, the Penn Township Trustee,
“Right now, an average home in Penn township pays four dollars a month for property taxes to support the fire station.
Their proposal, the task force, come up with would raise that four dollars to 33 dollars a month, to provide the protection they have recommended.”

Mishawaka will be one of the parties discussing a possible partnership with Penn.

Mayor Jeff Rea welcomed the opportunity, saying “I hope elected officials are thinking outside the box, I hope folks are looking at ways to partner and to not duplicate services.”

The Mayor says that a study of the Mishawaka Fire Department’s long term needs recommended building fire stations in the same areas, where two Penn Township stations already stand.

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