LAS VEGAS, Nev. (FOX5) – On Tuesday evening, the Henderson City Council addressed a ballot question that could bring in $27.5 million for the city’s fire department through a special tax.

The ballot measure has already been approved and will be in the hands of voters this fall. At this meeting, the council unanimously agreed to rewrite the text of the ballot initiative for the sake of clarity.

The council also voted to create “for” and “against” committees for the bill and assigned members to each. The two groups will write summaries that appear on the ballot, explaining the arguments on both sides of the issue.

The council approved putting a special elective property tax on the ballot to pay for fire department operations, maintenance, personnel, and equipment. To raise the $27.5 million requested, property taxes in Henderson would go up six cents per every $100 of assessed valuation.

Henderson Fire Chief Shawn White says his department desperately needs the money as the city has grown dramatically.

Voters will decide on the potential tax in November.

“A little over 20 years ago, when the city leaders of our past set out on a goal to become America’s premier community, we realized pretty quick that you are not going to have a premier community without a premier fire department,” Chief White said.

He added that the department is currently struggling to meet its performance benchmarks, such as an eight-minute time limit for a ladder truck to reach a fire.

“We can currently only meet that goal about 50 percent of the time,” White explained. Calls to Henderson Fire and EMS have jumped by 23% in the past five years.


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