Benton County Fire District 4 is starting its annual budget process for 2021. Members of the public are invited to participate at two upcoming meetings with the Board of Fire Commissioners:
· Thursday, October 22 at 6 p.m. – This is a budget workshop where funding issues are discussed.
· Thursday, November 5 at 6 p.m. – This is a public hearing and the Board is expected to take action on the budget for 2021.
Due to the current pandemic, all meetings are held by conference call. To participate in the meetings, call 571-748-4021 and enter the pass code 977-1116.
The fire district would like to share information as to how it develops its annual budget. First, it determines the revenue it will receive based on assessed property values combined with its levies for fire and emergency medical service. Then, an executive team works with emergency personnel to develop a list of priorities based on call volumes, personnel, apparatus and equipment needs.
These priorities are presented to the Board of Fire Commissioners during the budget workshop. From that meeting, a draft budget is developed for consideration during the public hearing. At the public hearing, the Board continues discussion and takes public comment and then can pass the budget or continue the conversation to another meeting if more time is required.
Benton County Fire District 4 works hard to be transparent and a good steward of taxpayer dollars. The fire district operates under a balanced budget, maintains adequate reserve funds in case of emergencies, and has passed all its independent audits by the state. More information on past budgets can be found on the fire district website at www.bcfd4.org.