First, being new to the Urbana community I want to thank everyone who has welcomed me and made me feel right at home. I’m writing to tell you how proud I am of the fire and police division and how I would appreciate your support this May on the Fire/Police/EMS levy. As your Fire Chief, I have witnessed how our safety forces serve the community professionally and courteously daily.
No one likes a tax increase, but I would like to show you how the fire division has grown since the last time voters passed an increase in 1991. In 1992 the fire division responded to 1,827 calls for service, last year with the same amount of personnel as in 1992 our division responded to 2,878 calls for service. With a minimum of five personnel on duty each day, our capabilities are being stretched by multiple calls for service at the same time. In the first three months of this year, statistically speaking two runs in progress was a daily occurrence and three runs at the same time occurred about one third of those days.
I am proud of our division and the accomplishments of our firefighters. In addition to fighting fires and saving lives, our firefighters conduct EMS and fire prevention, car seat installation, and CPR courses to the community. EMS, fire, and police operations are critical components for the community, I would appreciate your continued support of these operations by voting yes on the Fire/Police/EMS levy.
Dean Ortlieb is the Chief of the Urbana Fire Division.