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Our readers write

Our readers write

Posted: Thursday, May 24, 2012 7:00 pm

County shirks responsibility

To The Editor:
For years now, Obion County has shirked the responsibility of providing fire protection for those citizens residing outside the corporate limits of municipalities. The Obion County Commission has relied on the taxpayers of those municipalities to pay for the coverage for all county residents. It is now time for the Obion County Commission to “man up” and take responsibility.
I was in emergency services for over 25 years and the topic came up on a regular basis, most of the time when a house burned outside incorporated city limits. The national media responded by blaming the municipality or the firefighters, none of which were to blame.
Now the “fire commission” is once again being called upon to find a solution to a problem that could easily be settled. The Obion County Commission could fund a fire department, one station would constitute a fire department, and the municipal fire departments could enter into “mutual aid” agreements with that department. They currently have a mutual aid agreement with each other, providing support to other departments as needed.
Then, as possible, additional county stations could be funded, providing faster response time in those rural areas.
This approach, while having costs associated, would put Obion County on a par with surrounding counties that are competing with Obion County for industries and increased revenue.
The national media should hold the Obion County Commission accountable for failing to provide fire protection to its rural citizens, rather than trying to accuse towns and cities in Obion County of not caring for the rural citizens.
Phillip C. Senn

Published in The Messenger 5.24.12