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Public input sought on consolidation

Wednesday, January 24, 2007

BENTON -- Fire district officials will seek public input on a proposed consolidation of Scott County's fire departments.

Scott County Developer Joel Evans updated county commissioners on his plan to gather comments from the public.

"It will be an open forum to gauge public opinion about a possible consolidation," Evans said during the regular County Commission meeting Tuesday. "Taxpayer input will be the basis for our next move."

The Scott County Rural Fire Protection District board will invite the public's input during its regular monthly board meeting scheduled for 6 p.m. Feb. 1 at the district's Station No. 2 located at 910 West Harding St. in Morley just off Highway 61.

"Public opinion will determine our course of action," Evans said.

Evans said comments and questions can also be mailed to the Scott County Rural Fire Protection District, P.O. Box 92, Blodgett, Mo. 63824 or sent by e-mail to info@scottcountymo.com.

Evans asked that all correspondence regarding the consolidation include specific details and contact information.

In other business during Tuesday's meeting, officials from the county's University Extension office presented their annual report and budget request.

"They didn't ask for any increase," Presiding Commissioner Jamie Burger said.

"A lot of counties have cut funding to the extension service," he noted. "We are committed to holding the line."

Commissioner Dennis Ziegenhorn said the University Extension does a lot of good in the county.

A public hearing for the county's 2007 budget will be at 11 a.m. Thursday, according to County Clerk Rita Milam.