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Kenton approves rural fire plan

Kenton approves rural fire plan

By KEVIN BOWDEN
Staff Reporter
A new rural fire subscription plan is now in place in Kenton.
“For all practical purposes, we’re back to where it was,” Fire Chief Ed Sims told The Messenger today.
He explained Kenton operated under such a subscription program before the recent push to establish countywide fire protection.
Now, Kenton’s subscription program covers the Obion and Gibson county sides of the border town.
The Kenton mayor and board of aldermen met in a called session that lasted about 90 minutes Friday evening to come up with the subscription plan.
The board fine tuned its rural fire plan during its called meeting Friday. A second vote on the new play will come up at the board’s July meeting.
Under Kenton’s rural fire subscription plan, homeowners in Kenton’s rural fire district will be asked to pay a $75 annual fee to be covered under the rural fire subscription program. Businesses and farm operations in the rural fire district will be asked to pay $150 a year.
“We’re going back, more or less, to our original subscription plan,” Sims said.
Kenton’s rural fire subscription program will be managed by Bobby Taylor, who already manages the program on the Gibson County side of town.
Sims estimated there are about 350 to 400 potential subscribers in the Kenton rural fire district (on the Obion County side of town) who will be sent notices informing them of the new rural fire subscription plan.
“I think it will work fine,” Sims said today.
He attended Friday’s meeting of the Kenton mayor and board of aldermen.
What Kenton’s rural fire subscription plan means for those who live in the town’s rural fire district is they will be asked to pay a subscription fee. Those who pay the annual fee will be covered in the event of a fire, and will be charged $500 per fire call. That fee could be turned in to a subscriber’s insurance company.
There will be no charge for fire protection for churches in Kenton’s rural fire district, but parsonages will have to pay the fire protection fee.
The Kenton Volunteer Fire Department will not respond to a fire if the annual subscription fee has not been paid, according to Sims.
Of Obion County’s nine incorporated cities, rural fire protection plans are in place in seven of those cities — Union City, South Fulton, Hornbeak, Samburg, Rives, Obion and now Kenton. Woodland Mills doesn’t have a fire department and Troy has yet to approve a rural fire plan.
Kenton officials will draft a formal letter to county officials requesting to be released from the county’s interlocal agreement.
Absent from Friday’s called meeting were board members Sarah Skinner and Wade Simpson.
Staff Reporter Kevin Bowden may be contacted by email at kmbowden@ucmessenger.com.

Published in The Messenger 6.25.12

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