Lois James Against the Fire District Levy Increase

On the November 2 ballot voters have a choice – whether to allow Fire District 3 to raise its levy (a tax increase).  The sole purpose of this tax increase is to take over San Juan Island Emergency Services (SJIEMS).

I believe having SJIEMS become part of the Fire District would be a huge mistake.   According to the public Hospital District meeting minutes, SJIEMS calls are responded to within 2 minutes; furthermore, according to these same minutes, a national survey agency shows  those who have needed SJIEMS service gave it a 98/100 grade.  This ranks 5th out of 175 similar agencies across the country – what a remarkable achievement for our island!

For the past 2 years, the fire department has been responding to “all” 911 dispatched SJIEMS calls without being requested by SJIEMS to do so.   Why?  Does fire personnel and trucks want to be seen by the public as being active?   By the Fire Commission’s own minutes, 68% of the fire department’s responses are 911 dispatched SJIEMS calls.  Contrary to Mr. Jarman’s statement in the Voter’s Pamphlet, Fire District 3 has no paramedics. 

When SJIEMS and the fire department were one, SJIEMS separated due to receiving the short end of the financial stick.   Just look at the “proposed” table of organization for the combined agency and you’ll see SJIEMS occupies an insignificant place while fire is top heavy.


Vote NO to the Fire District’s levy increase.

Lois James