Property taxes in the City of Central just increased, as voters approved a new millage to support Central Fire Department.
Fire Department officials sought the 4.25-mill tax, estimated to generate about $560,000 per year, to boost hiring. The measure passed with 60 percent of the vote.
Currently, the fire stations are staffed with only one firefighter at a time. The tax will allow them to hire nine more firefighters and district chiefs.
The Fire Department estimated the new tax will cost typical homeowners, with a homestead exemption, less than $5 a month for property valued at around $200,000. They expect the tax to cost less than $3 a month for those with property worth $150,000 and less than $1 a month for property at $100,000.
The tax would last 10 years, and the money would go toward salaries and benefits for the new hires.
The Central Fire Department, which is a separate entity from the city, already has another 10-mill property tax that provides more than a third of its revenue.
The new tax will not be collected until the end of 2015.