Enumclaw Courier-Herald


Enumclaw to provide dispatch and other services to King County Fire District 28

Enumclaw Courier Herald Senior Writer
January 29, 2014 · 5:29 PM

Enumclaw Fire Department / Courtesy photo

Enumclaw voters may have decided in November 2010 to annex into King County Fire District 28, but the city has continued to provide some crucial services – just as it did prior to the landslide vote.

A formal, ongoing arrangement has called for the city to handle dispatch services, meet information technology needs and perform vehicle and equipment maintenance. That agreement was extended for another three years during the Jan. 13 meeting of the Enumclaw City Council.

When Enumclaw’s annexation into the fire district took place, a “transition agreement” spelled out that the city would perform emergency dispatch duties and IT services through 2013. The new pact extends things to 2016.

When it comes to dispatching, King County designates certain Public Safety Answering Points, which is linked to the county’s 911 funding. It is expected, during the coming three years, that the county will decide the extent of its PSAPs and whether Enumclaw will continue to receive 911 dollars. The recent agreement between the city and fire district guarantees some continuity while the county plows its way through the decision-making process.

According to the terms of the agreement, Fire District 28 will pay the city $40 for each emergency call handled by city dispatchers. That fee is similar to the charge assessed by ValleyCom, a regional dispatch center.

When it comes to information technology services, the city will charge District 28 the same rate that is assessed to various city departments.

The charge for vehicle and equipment maintenance will cover the cost of parts and labor, with an additional 20 percent tacked on for administrative overhead.

The fire district had agreed to the three-year agreement prior to council acceptance.

In other action items during their Jan. 13 meeting, members of the council:

• approved a final property tax rate to be applied in 2014. While drafting the municipal budget for the current year, city leaders had not received concrete numbers from the county, so the city budget was built upon estimates. Firm numbers are now available. Taking the 1 percent increase allowed by state law, the council authorized a property tax rate of $1.4207 per $1,000 of assessed property value.

• agreed to “bank” levy capacity in the amount of $466,185. Cities can choose to collect fewer property taxes dollars than they’re legally entitled to, and that’s what Enumclaw did for 2014. The state says it’s OK to set that unused taxing authority aside and retain the ability to collect the money at a later date – thus “banking” the unused taxing authority.

• appointed Ryan Overbay to the city’s Arts Commission.

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