Posted on: June 23, 2017
Voters in the City of Newberg and Rural Area will Decide Whether to Permanently Join TVF&R
This November, voters in the city of Newberg and in the Newberg Rural Fire Protection District will have the opportunity to decide whether to join Tualatin Valley Fire & Rescue’s service area permanently.
Elected leaders for both the city and the rural fire district independently decided to place measures on the November ballot after nearly a year of consideration.
On June 19, the Newberg City Council determined that joining TVF&R permanently offered the best option for providing stable fire and emergency medical services in the future. In response to public feedback gathered during town halls, focus groups, a phone survey, presentations to civic groups and other community events, city leaders unanimously voted to refer the issue to city residents who will make the ultimate decision at the ballot box in November.
The council also plans to move forward with an ordinance that ensures the city will not levy its entire permanent tax rate for a year, reducing the tax rate by the $1.88 per $1,000 assessed property valuation, which is the estimated amount currently paid for fire operations. In the future, the proposed ordinance would also limit the council’s ability to increase the rate by no more than 3 percent annually.
While the outcome of the city’s election will not directly impact rural residents, because the Newberg Rural Fire Protection District has been dependent on the city for service in the past, Newberg rural leaders also evaluated options for future fire and emergency medical services.
On June 20, the Newberg Rural Fire Protection District Board of Directors unanimously voted to begin an annexation process with TVF&R by placing a measure on the November ballot for rural area residents’ consideration.
Since July 2016, Tualatin Valley Fire & Rescue has provided fire and emergency medical services to the city of Newberg and surrounding rural area as part of a contract agreement to strengthen emergency response efforts across the region. This contract is not a long-term solution and will expire at the end of June 2018.