Harrisburg will receive full compensation from the state for providing fire protection and emergency services to the 40 tax-exempt state buildings located in the Capitol complex in the 2013-14 state budget making its way through the General Assembly.
Sen. Rob Teplitz, D-Dauphin County, applauded the funding that he along with state Rep. Patty Kim, D-Harrisburg, and Harrisburg’s city receiver Gen. William Lynch fought to get included in the $28.4 billion spending plan.
Despite that, Teplitz voted against the budget plan, which passed the Senate by a 33-17 vote. Democratic senators lambasted the plan for being too light on education and human service spending.
This amount going to Harrisburg exceeds the $2.5 million that Gov. Tom Corbett had proposed in his budget and what Teplitz called “the abysmal $496,000” in the House-passed budget.
The City of York, PA has four fire stations and a staff of 67 firefighters. However, like all municipalities, York is looking at ways to cut costs. Kim Bracey, York’s Mayor, said she will not close/merge any fire stations or cut staff if it will cut response time. However, Mayor Bracey said the Fire Committee is looking into options like regionalization and cooperative agreements with other fire services organizations, including volunteers.
Emergency services costs are a big-ticket budget item and Bracey said city government needs to be responsible stewards of the taxpayer’s money. If working together as a regional fire department can achieve the same high-quality results, at a lower cost, that option needs to be explored. It has worked for many police departments. York County already has regional police departments. The Fire Committee will present their fire/EMS modernization plan to the public on April 5th.
The City of York has 43,718 residents (2010 census) and a land area of 5.20 square miles. Mayor Bracey was the city’s Community Development Director before being elected mayor.