Penn Fire is set to formally take over 911 calls across Osceola.
They’ve already been serving the area under an inter-local agreement since last January.
Penn Township’s board voted to unanimously approve the resolution Wednesday night, just one day after Osceola’s board approved the resolution.
Osceola is set to be part of the Penn Township fire protection territory, but they’ll have to pay for it.
Penn Fire won’t formally be taking on the duties set forth in the resolution until July, so what exactly is going to change between now and then?
“Absolutely nothing,” Penn Township Trustee Doris Portolese said. “Because we’ve been doing it, you know, for the last, like I said, about 18 months.”
Now, as Penn Fire formally takes over, Osceola residents will see their taxes go up about $42 for every $100,000 their home is valued at.
“But people will notice, the taxes will not change until after January of ’19,” Portolese said. “So when they get their assessment and their tax bill March, April, May- for their May installment, it will be listed there.”
Everything Penn Fire has done since last January and leading up to 2019 has been paid for, but once that 2019 tax form comes in, it will look a little different.
“The taxpayers will be paying in a different way,” Portolese said. “Instead of it going to the town, there’s actually a line item on their statement, which will help pay for the fire territory.”
Penn Township won’t gain anything, as the money will just be paying for the fire service, but they say it’s something that needs to be done.
“It’s a good thing to do,” Board President Kent Hizer said. “But it’s the right thing to do. The residents of Osceola are a part of Penn Township and I think it kind of puts into place what should have been in place probably a long time ago.”
In the month of February across their entire territory, Penn Fire has had 8 fires, 90 rescues or emergency medical services, 5 hazardous condition calls, 14 service calls, and 2 severe weather and natural disaster calls. There were also 38 good intent calls and 6 false alarms, totalling 163 calls in the month.
The fire chief does know how many of those were in Osceola, but says he’ll let us know when has those numbers