The Aspen Fire Protection District is asking voters to approve an increase in property taxes that would fund firefighter housing, capital improvements and more.
Ballot Issue 6A would bring in $3.3 million per year in taxes for Aspen Fire. About 40 percent would go to building firefighter housing on land the district owns near its North 40 station. The all-volunteer department requires that firefighters live in the district.
The remainder would be used to create a disaster fund in case of a large wildfire, and for volunteer benefits and new equipment.
Chief Rick Ballentine said the measure also addresses an automatic funding decrease resulting from Colorado’s Gallagher Amendment; in 2019, Aspen Fire expects to lose about 10 percent of its funding because of an adjustment to the residential assessment rate.
The housing portion of the tax would sunset after 20 years.