To: Mayor John Krasuski and Council Members

A few days ago I received a renewal notice on my Rural Fire Protection membership and it showed a 100% increase. It was double the amount that it had cost in past years. It is a well-known fact that if you have more business than you can handle, you raise your prices and thereby lose some customers, but you also make more money. I doubt that is the Fire Department’s position. I believe they are penalizing the “paying customers” to make up for “non-payers” when they are called out on a “wild fire” and they can’t collect a payment that is owed them. The non-payers want a free ride because they know it is a volunteer fire department. I have been told you have no legal means at your disposal to collect money owed by those people. What about the city attorney and county prosecuting attorney’s or the “small claims court”? There should be some serious effort put forth through these legal channels. It would have a positive effect on the membership census.
An annual increase of 25% or 50% would be much more acceptable than a 100% all at once. If there are a number of people not renewing membership, it seems to me that the financial position of the Rural Fire Department will only get worse rather than improve. I AM DISAPPOINTED IN ALL OF YOU. You know this goes well beyond the city limits.
Very Concerned,
Bryan Reese 
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Howell County News

110 W. Main St.,
Willow Springs, MO 65793

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