Residents in nine of the 27 fire districts in Johnston County could be paying higher fire taxes beginning July 1st. Nine fire departments are requesting an increase in the fire tax rates they charge each year and are included on your annual property tax bills.
The Fire Tax Budget Committee of the Johnston County Board of Commissioners met on Wednesday, June 9th and will meet again today (Thursday, June 10th) at 4:00pm to review the tax increase requests. The committee will make their recommendation to the full board of commissioners for consideration and adoption later this month.
The Cleveland, Corinth Holders, Bethany, Micro, Benson, Brogden, Meadow, Princeton and Kenly Fire Departments have requested increases this year. The largest increases being sought are in the Princeton and Meadow fire districts.
The Princeton Fire Department has proposed increasing their fire tax rate from 5 to 10 cents per $100 property valuation. The Meadow Fire Department is seeking to increase their tax rate from 7 to 11 cents.
|Fire Department||Current Tax Rate||Proposed New Tax Rate|
|Boon Hill (Princeton)||0.05||0.10|
|PI-LE (Pine Level)||0.10|
|Wynn (Four Oaks)||0.08|
Johnston County Fire Marshal Adam Stanley said the average home price in Princeton is $215,000. The average resident who is now paying $106.00 each year will pay $212.00 next year in fire taxes if the increase is approved.
In Meadow, where the average new home price is $208,000, the average cost is $207 per year. The fire tax rate would increase by $41 to $248 annually.
Fire Marshal Stanley said the primary reason for the increase is for the departments to hire additional personnel to respond to emergency calls.
Benson Fire Chief Alan Johnson said his agency is seeking a two cents increase from 10 to 12 cents. The Benson Fire Department currently has two full-time firefighters at the station Monday through Friday from 8am until 5pm. The increase, if approved, would allow the department to have a paid firefighter at the station 24 hours a day, 7 days a week. Chief Johnson said there aren’t as many volunteers as they use to be.
Citizens who have questions about the fire tax rates or the fire tax budget can contact the Johnston County Manager’s Office at 919-989-5100.