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Discussion Starter #1
There has been an ongoing legal battle between my town and the county islands that reside in and around it. The islands have had fire service provided by a private company. That company decided to no longer provide fire service so the islands said they would pay the town to provide coverage. Nope! Greedy town that it is says if they don't annex, they don't get fire service. Some of the islands agreed to annex but some others didn't. So this month alone:

1) One county island home burned to the ground while town fire dept watched. They were on scene and did NOTHING! It is the town council's way of scaring the other island owners into annexing. Their motto is basically "Annex or Burn".

2) One county island that agreed to be annexed saw the zoning immediately changed with no grandfather rights. The new zoning says no breeding, boarding, or rescues allowed. One particular group severly affected is a rescue group that bought the land years ago specifically to develop a shelter. The town closed them down effective immediately and the 35+ animals will be put to sleep if not adopted within 90 days. :'(

I think all these beaurocrats need to be taken out in a field and shot. :mad: I can't believe the money grubbers don't have respect for any other living thing. I'm embarrased to be associated with this town.
 

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How horrible! I hope everyone remembers this when the election comes around again. :(
 

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That is horrible Lydia :( Is there any way to get a petition going around to sign for support of the county islands?
 

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A county island is an area surrounded by cities that has not been annex in to become part of a city. Generally in order to be annexed the residents of the area have to agree to it. Because they are not part of a city it means they don't have to have city zoning regulations or pay city taxes. But it also means they don't have city services.

Gilbert did dispatch a truck to the home that burned because if people (or animals) had been in the house they would have entered and rescued them. But they refuse to put their fire fighters at risk to fight fires in county islands. There are a lot of county islands in that area and as Gilbert is the last city before it becomes a county area they get stuck covering more county islands than other cities such as Phoenix that are surrounded by other communities. The number of county island's in the Phoenix response area is very small and they are usually just a few blocks long.

The reason Rural Metro stopped offering protection is they don't have a station close enough anymore (since other areas were annexed) to get to homes in time to respond before they burn. This leaves the county islands the same as living in the country. No fire or emergency medical services. Because Rural Metro doesn't have many stations most of the cities that surround the areas they serve do not have a sharing agreement with them because the city services being the closest would alway be there first. Most cities do allow residents in county islands to pay them a yearly fee for fire/emergency services but Gilbert has elected not to do that.

In the Phoenix Metro area (of which Gilbert is a part) most cities have what is called a cooperation agreement. It means the closest services are dispatched. So for instance I live1/2 mile from the Glendale/Phoenix boundary in Phoenix. The closest fire station to me is 1 mile away in Glendale. If we dial 911 they dispatch Glendale's fire department. The nearest Phoenix station to me is less than 2 miles but they have to go under the freeway. Now my BR lives in Glendale but that Phoenix station is closest to him so they would get Phoenix Fire Dept.

It is not unusual to drive by the Phoenix Station and see Glendale's trucks in it and vise versa. Dispatch tracks the number of units on calls and will shift resources regardless of city to provide coverage. So if 2 stations in a row from Glendale are on calls but Phoenix has 2 stations in a row with trucks available they shift one to a Glendale station to cover. The average response time in Phoenix is under 4 minutes. By sharing services it benefits both cities. Also on a large fire it is quite common to see units from 5 or 6 different cities.
 

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which politician do you need to borrow my 12 gage shotgun for I will donate it. it hasn't been fired in a while and needs a good work out. hehehe j/k
 

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I'm confused. Wouldn't they have fire-service for their own area? I own a city home, and also rural acreage that is just outside the city limits. I wouldn't expect the city firefighters to come to a fire at our rural property, but instead the township firefighters. ???
 

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Watching a house burn to the ground is an outrage. What a nice lesson to teach the citizens.

Upstate New York is full of satellite towns and villages that are bumped into each other. It is very difficult to retain autonomy and provide the services required. Consolidation of services is mandatory if property taxes are to be held in check. We enjoy some of the highest property taxes and the duplication of service within a one mile radius is laughable.

In my village the local PD patrol 2.5 miles of village roads.We have 8 part time Police officers. The remaining roads are patrolled by the county Sheriffs, NYS troopers and a township police force. Taxpayers in our village pay a village,town,and county property tax. We finance all 3 police depts plus the State troopers. The school districts are the same way.

Unfortunately the political machine refuses to give up each little fifedom and taxes rise. For years (decades) the citizens complain about the tax increase but cannot get through their heads that consolidating services is a viable option. When the voting public gets disgusted enough perhaps consolidating services will become a reality.

Annexation is a little drastic but shared services should be a reasonable solution. I hope the citizens of your community are outraged enough to make this happen.

I always enjoyed the quote from the movie "V".

" The people should not fear their government. The government should fear the people."
 

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In area's of the county where there is enough population to make it cost effective Rural Metro provides fire protection for a fee. But Arizona is a state with vast areas of open land that goes on for miles. It is very different then states in other parts of the country. There is no way for a fire dept to provide coverage by the time they get there it is to late.

In this case RM nearest station is 20 miles away I heard and they have to get through about 15 miles of city traffic. In this case there is just not enough population in the county island to get RM to put a station in there. They are a for profit company so they make decisions about where to build based on profit.

The residents have the option to form a volunteer fire dept but none of these county islands have one that I know of and I know people from almost all the fire departments because of my job. Really rural area fires are fought as brush fires by the county. There is just no way to get a fire truck to a house 50 miles away from the nearest fire dept.

When we built our cabin (we have since sold) we put in sprinklers because we knew it would be up to us to handle any fires.
 

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Interesting. Our cabin is on 38 acres in a township of 500 sq kilometres, and 20 people/sq K. We have four (volunteer) fire departments to cover that area. So the response time is likely much slower than in an urban area, but at least they'll fight the fire.
 

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Jan said:
Interesting. Our cabin is on 38 acres in a township of 500 sq kilometres, and 20 people/sq K. We have four (volunteer) fire departments to cover that area. So the response time is likely much slower than in an urban area, but at least they'll fight the fire.
That's how we are - we have lots of rural land, so the bulk of our area is covered by volunteer fire departments. In fact, I think almost 90% is covered by volunteer departments. Having said that, it's a completely different scenario here as compared to Arizona in terms of population density.
 

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G'day,

Thank god its not just my municipal council down here that're dropkicks, but thats really messed up - "Annex or Burn"
What the hell goes through these councilors heads? Obviously not much at all.

Brain for sale - Asking top price as it came from either a politician, city councilor or someone in upper management :p
(Therefore it hasn't had much use)

Cheers,

Pottsie
 

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Geez, my brother's out in Gilbert, I hope he's not at risk! Sprinklers sounds like a good policy.
 

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Discussion Starter #19
Jan said:
I'm confused. Wouldn't they have fire-service for their own area?
They did, Rural Metro, but RM has pulled out of the area. The islands residents agreed to pay Gilbert for fire service but greedy Gilbert said "not unless you annex". The islands didn't want to do that for obvious reasons (see my first post about forcing lifestyle changes).

In order to form a fire district under current law, all of the land must be connected. These are "islands" which means they are unconnected pieces of land. The islands residents were able to get a law proposed which will allow them to form a fire district even though the land is not connected but it hasn't passed yet. In addition, Gilbert town council is POd that the residents are trying to create this law (because they want them to annex) so they are suing the individual people involved in creating the law...the representatives/senators and even Essy's breeder who has been actively involved in preventing the annexation. This law suit is costing Gilbert tons of money which means I'm paying for it (via taxes) and I'm totally against it as are most of Gilbert's population. There is a movement to recall the council but is it too little too late? Is is for the family of the burn out home and the rescue org.
 

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Discussion Starter #20
MickeysMommy said:
Geez, my brother's out in Gilbert, I hope he's not at risk! Sprinklers sounds like a good policy.
If he is in the Town, he is fine (as I am) except that his taxes are going to fight this frivilous law suit. ::)
 
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