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Issues:  Challenges of Forming a County-WIde RFPD
Issues: The Details
Issues:  An Informed Public

 

EXPLORATORY COMMITTEE

Brochure 1 of 16 in Rural Fire Protection Brochure Series

May 8, 2008
by
Exploratory Committee Members
Paul Cavaille
Mike Chanquet
Randy Clark
Jim Dittmer
Roy Hogg
Mike Walker

"Unprotected Area"

Josephine County Integrated Fire Plan1 Josephine County has developed a local community wildfire protection plan (i.e., 2004 Josephine County Integrated Fire Plan - JCIFP); Josephine County Board of County Commissioners (BCC) - Resolution 2004-074; Memorandum of Agreement for Collaboration for Community Wildfire Protection Plan).

Colonial Valley, Hugo, Jumpoff Joe, North Valley & Merlin

The Colonial Valley, Hugo, Jumpoff Joe, North Valley, and Merlin neighborhoods are identified as communities at risk in the Jumpoff Joe Creek drainage of Josephine County, Oregon (JCIFP). They are not within a fire taxing district and are listed as "unprotected". They do have fire services provided by private corporations that act as "fire departments".

• Rural Metro Fire Department

• Inland Fire Protection Agency

• Grants Pass Rural Fire Department

Oregon Fire Marshal The Office of State Fire Marshal (OSFM) encourages RFPDs be formed under ORS 478 and ORS 198, and in compliance with Oregon Special Districts Statues ORS 198.010-198.955, Oregon Public Meeting Law ORS 192.610-192.710, Oregon Public Records Law ORS 192.410-192.505 (http://www.wrfpd.org/), and OR-OSHA safety and health standards.

Exploratory Committee

Exploratory Committee’s Structure The Exploratory Committee is a small informal nonprofit charitable and educational organization with a mission promoting the public’s safety of life and property from structural fires and wildfires. Part of its purpose is to independently investigate the potential for forming a local RFPD. Independent does not mean ignoring the valuable information and perspectives that consultant resources can provide.

Members of the Exploratory Committee are responsible for its health and well being. A qualification of potential members is that they be advocates for the Exploratory Committee’s mission. Existing members have the authority to independ-ently investigate, solicit, and champion new members to the Exploratory Committee, including the expertise of consultant experts.

"The Colonial Valley, Hugo, Jumpoff Joe, North Valley and Merlin neighborhoods are identified as communities at risk in the Jumpoff Joe Creek drainage of Josephine County, Oregon."

Outreach Information gathered by the Exploratory Committee would be made available to others for their own evaluation concerning the merits of creating a RFPD.

RFPDs

RFPDs Outside of city limits RFPDs are formed by voter approval to deliver structural fire protection service within a certain part of their county. Josephine County has four existing RFPDs.

• Applegate RFPD #9 (ISO Class 6/9)

• Illinois Valley RFPD (ISO Class7/10)

• Williams RFPD (ISO Class7/10)

• Wolf Creek RFPD (ISO Class7/10)

County areas not within boundaries of existing RFPD’s and outside of city limits are designated "unprotected" (JCIF). This is a large area that could be organized as a single structural fire protection taxing district or it could be organized by smaller geographic areas. Another alternative is to continue subscriptions with private fire departments.

District citizens may vote to create their own local fire districts. District governance is by elected local area fire district representatives, not by the Josephine County Board of County Commissioners, while revenue for operations is by a district voter approved tax assessment, collected by the Josephine County Office of County Assessor.

Want more information? Contact a member of the Exploratory Committee.

RFPD Exploratory Committee’s Mission

Mission An independent Rural Fire Protection District (RFPD) Exploratory Committee (Exploratory Committee) to investigate the potential for forming a RFPD in the general Merlin-Hugo region was formed in the fall of 2007.

Big picture ideas for the exploratory effort include the following.

1. Identifying a range of boundaries for potential RFPD(s).

2. Identifying a range in level of services from potential RFPD(s).

3. Identifying a range of fees or assessments for services from potential RFPD(s).

4. Identifying revenues for services from potential RFPD(s).

The ultimate goal is a higher level of fire protection service for a lower cost.

The purpose of the Exploratory Committee is to gather information adequate enough to understand the rules/process to form a potential RFPD (i.e., rules, difficulty, pros and cons, levels of service, fees/ assessments, elections, etc.). This includes educational outreach efforts.

The Exploratory Committee’s purpose is limited to investigating and researching the potential (i.e., merits and liabilities) for forming a RFPD. Other potential actions will be considered and acted upon by other entities after the Exploratory Committee’s purpose has ended.

The contents of this brochure are expressions of the opinions and beliefs of those that contribute based on their thoughts and experiences and are not presented for any other purpose.

- Donations Are Not Tax Deductible -

Edited by Exploratory Committee

http://www.jeffnet.org/~hugo/existing1.htm

1. More information is provided in the Exploratory Committee’s educational outreach program of 16 brochures.

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