A five-year levy to keep Bend Fire and Rescue fully staffed was narrowly passing in early returns Wednesday morning.
As of 5:30 a.m., the measure was passing 52.4% to 46.8% — a margin of about 1,100 votes.
The old levy expires on June 30, 2024. Even if this new levy does not pass, it will continue to be placed on the ballot until it does pass or the deadline expires.
The current levy, according to Bend Fire, is 20 cents per $1,000 on the assesed value of a home. The new levy would increae that to 76 cents per $1,000.
The levy will provide between $12 million and $14 million per year for operations.
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The La Pine Rural Fire Protection District is seeking a similar five-year levy fo pay for as many as nine new firefighters. It’s estimated to bring in $1.4 million in its first year.
It was passing 67.3% to 32.7%.