NECCFD debating between renewal, replacement levy


NORTH LEWISBURG – With the Northeast Champaign County Fire District’s current three-year, 4.5-mill replacement levy for fire protection and ambulance service set to expire at the end of the year, the NECCFD Board this week continued discussions on whether to seek a renewal of the levy or try to pass a replacement levy.

According to figures presented to the board by Fiscal Officer Jennifer Jenkins, a 4.5-mill replacement levy would generate a gross amount of $429,000 a year, while a renewal levy would generate a gross amount of $365,000.

“I think you go for a renewal,” board member (Rush Township) Randy Williams said, citing concerns over other entities placing levies on the ballot in November as well. “If you want to go out and talk to people, you might get (a replacement levy) passed because that’s what we did on the cemetery (levy).”

Board member (North Lewisburg) Andy Yoder added, “The safe move is a renewal, but I definitely think we can use more funds for operations.”

Following discussion on the matter, the board agreed to table the decision on renewal levy versus replacement levy until the July 27 meeting.

In other business:

•A motion was passed by the board to compensate paramedic Sarah Page a biweekly stipend of $375 for taking on extra duties following the resignation of former Assistant EMS Chief/Operations Manager Tim Detwiler back in May. The stipend is only being offered on a interim basis while the board explores its options.

•A four-member committee was formed by the board to discuss the district’s personnel policy manual.

•The board passed a motion accepting the district’s tax budget for 2016.

•A blood drive will be held from 1 to 7 p.m. on Thursday, July 9, in the community room of the municipal building, 60 E. Maple St. Those who donate blood will receive a free T-shirt, while supplies last.

Appointments can be scheduled by calling 800-REDCROSS or by visiting redcrossblood.org and entering sponsor code “NLMB.”

•Fire Chief Mike Penhorwood said the district will take part in a session of the Champaign County Library North Lewisburg Branch’s Summer Reading Club on Monday, July 27. From 5 to 7 p.m., the district will have several apparatuses on display at the library, 161 Winder St.