Springfield Residents Paying for Fire Improvements

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SPRINGFIELD- Resident after resident stood in front of the Springfield city commission meeting Monday to voice their concerns over an $88 fire assessment.

The city is charging the fee for each parcel of land, which allowed Springfield to add additional firefighters this past spring.

If the city had failed to respond, the Insurance Service Office, or ISO, would have raised the fire rating, meaning property over would pay more for insurance, if they could get insurance at all. But, some resident ay they can afford the new fee.

"If they can't pay it all, then they can't pay it all. I mean, I'm not going to put a lean on a property for $40 or $80 or whatever it may be. We will work with them and try to get it paid off and do what we can," said Springfield Mayor Ralph Hammond.

There are some loop holes. Parcels known as enclaves, that are within the city, but not annexed by the city, still get police and fire protection.

"It's not fair for my neighbor who declined to come into the city because they don't want to hook up to water and sewer to get the same fire service rating that my other neighbor has to pay for," said Hammond.

The commission is researching a way to charge those owners for emergency services provided by the city.