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Sanibel Fire & Rescue approves budget

By CHUCK BALLARO - | Sep 23, 2020

Fire Commissioner Bruce Cochrane signs the resolution to approve the Sanibel Fire & Rescue District 2021 budget Wednesday at the Fire House. CHUCK BALLARO


The Sanibel Fire & Rescue District took about five minutes, or about the time it took to read the resolutions, to approve its budget for the 2021 fiscal year on Wednesday at the Fire Headquarters on Pine Ridge Road.

With no big-ticket items on the budget this year (unlike last year when the district got a new boat, half of it paid for through a grant), the fire commissioners were able to approve a 1.1089 millage, the same as last year, and a budget of $10,353,915, with about 80 to 85 percent of it going toward salaries and rest toward day-to-day operations, such as firehouse maintenance, fuel and the like.

The rolled back millage rate was 1.0854, meaning the increase in the budget was 2.17 percent.

Nobody came to the meeting to provide public input. Fire Chief Matthew Scott said the fact there was nobody at the meeting to protest is a testament to the way the district spends taxpayer money.

“They trust us with their money and we’re doing a good thing with it,” Scott said. “We have no major purchases this year, just maintaining what we have. We have reserves we’re setting aside because we know new apparatus down the road.”