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Vote yes on Measure B

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Higgins Fire District serving Lake of the Pines and south Nevada County placed Measure B on the June ballot to increase the existing, woefully inadequate 32-year-old parcel fee of $25. While Higgins has several revenue sources, they particularly depend on parcel fees in tough economic times. The problem is the $25 fee established in 1980 has lost two-thirds of its purchasing power because it lacked any escalation mechanism for inflation. The Consumer Price Index was 82 in 1980 and is 230 today. The cost of goods and services are almost triple now vs. 1980. Twenty-five dollars in 1980 bought 21 gallons of fuel for the fire engines. Today, it would cost approximately $88 to buy that 21 gallons! Most cash flow factors in our personal lives (wages, Social Security benefits, property taxes, etc.) escalated with inflation in some fashion over the past 32 years. But the 1980 $25 fire fee did not. Higgins is to be commended for prudent money management, but reserves are exhausted, painful cuts have been made and revenues are diminished. Therefore, the Measure B parcel fee increase is justified to restore purchasing power, restore firefighter voluntary 28 percent wage concessions and re-build budget reserves. Please join me in voting ?yes? on Measure B. Chet Krage, Grass Valley