Maumee Fire and EMS awaits Special Election votes

Maumee residents to decide on fire/EMS levy
Published: May. 1, 2023 at 8:19 PM EDT
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MAUMEE, Ohio (WTVG) - A big vote in Maumee could change how fire and EMS service is funded in the city.

Voters on Tuesday will go to the polls to place their ballot on the issue which could cost residents additional dollars.

The idea is to have more fire and EMS personnel available on a consistent basis. Yet, with money cuts coming from Lucas County, Maumee leaders say they’re trying to avoid future problems.

“Keep Maumee Safe” that’s the slogan on the signs popping up. One sits in front of the American Legion Hall on Illinois Avenue where Richard Cymbola is a member.

“I think it’s one of the safest communities in the area,” said Cymbola. To keep it that way, he supports the fire and EMS 5.6 mill additional levy that’s expected to generate around $2.9 million dollars a year. It’s a property tax. Currently, Maumee Fire and EMS are funded through only income tax for its roughly 2,400 yearly runs.

“To keep the community safe and keep it vibrant and going the way we’re going, I think it’s necessary we do support the levy,” said Cymbola.

“Public safety is a priority, and if we want to be there for them 24-7-365, 100 percent of the time, and the way the world is these days with our staffing model, it’s not sustainable,” said Chief Brandon Loboschefski.

Chief Loboschefski says with 85 percent of the calls EMS and 15 percent fire calls; the job is changing. These new dollars would retain the full-time staff and change the paid on-call EMTs paramedics to be permanent part-time. Plus, the department is preparing to lose the funding Lucas County provides for emergency services.

“We’re still working those details out but we do anticipate at least losing 50 percent of that money within the next year,” said Chief Loboschekski.

Here is what Maumee voters will need to decide Tuesday:

The new levy dollars will cost a homeowner of a $100,000 home nearly 54 cents per day or about $200.

The levy would generate about $2.9 million annually. The department says it costs almost $5 million to operate yearly.

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