2 minutes reading time (475 words)

Feb 2023: Community Message from our Fire Chief

ruralmetro-soule

Welcome to February- when we've forgotten the summer heat and our new year's resolutions! I hope everyone is enjoying this tremendous weather; I have lived in Ohio and Montana, and my wife tells me I will never return as I have become accustomed to this incredible winter weather! 

Recently, there has been a lot of discussion about how to best meet the fire suppression needs of this community – one of the most rapidly growing communities in the country – while maintaining the feel of our community. Fire Districting, incorporation, or maintaining the status quo are common topics of discussion. As your Fire Chief, my focus is on how to ensure that Rural Metro Fire meets the current and projected needs of this community. In January alone, Rural Metro Fire ran 380 emergency responses, which demonstrates the high volume of calls we currently receive. As the community grows, so will our call volume. Regardless of the structure of the fire service, Rural Metro Fire will continue to provide compassionate care to all residents in San Tan Valley.

In January, we attended several local public events. The Community BBQ, Community Connect Gala, a San Tan Valley Advisory Council event, and a Community Leaders breakfast were all opportunities to build relationships and hear about the needs and future of San Tan Valley from the residents. 

Out of roughly 42,000 properties in San Tan Valley, 15,700 have purchased Rural Metro Fire subscriptions which provides funding for emergency services in San Tan Valley instead of high tax levies, like our incorporated neighbors. Out of these subscriptions, three fire stations, four engine companies, and a rescue are funded 24/7/365. 

As our community grows, there becomes a need for up to three additional stations, with two more engine companies, to better serve San Tan Heights and the northern and western areas of San Tan Valley. 

In order to do that, we need another 5,000 properties as subscribers; that is still less than 50 percent of all properties funding 100 percent of emergency services for the community. You are fortunate to have the freedom to decide if you prefer to pay a subscription for fire service – that is consistently lower than the tax levied by municipalities – or pay after a fire for the fire suppression services that AZ law prohibits insurance companies from covering. 

I personally hope you see the value of choosing to support Rural Metro Fire fire and emergency medical services in San Tan Valley and allow us to grow alongside the community. I look forward to providing accurate information to help you make the most informed decision on fire service possible for your community.

As always, be safe and call us if you need us! 

Respectfully, 
Tim Soule, MS, EFO, CFO 
Fire Chief Rural Metro Fire San Tan Valley


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