Public hearing for proposed joint fire district

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The Village of South Corning and the Town of Corning proposed to create a joint fire district. This is looking to include the volunteer fire departments of North Corning, East Corning and the Village of South Corning.

The Gibson Fire District elected not to participate. 

If the merger goes as planned, it will standardize operating procedures under one administration. The proposal also aims to even out fire protection costs within the area. 

“At present, various areas are paying a different amount for fire protection, we feel that there should be some equalization of costs and this merger will allow us to possibly reduce the overall costs,” James Thomas, Mayor of the Village of South Corning, said. 

“This standardizes the tax rate to about a dollar a thousand, that’s my estimation right now based on the current assessed numbers,” Kim Feehan, Town of Corning Supervisor and CFO, said. 

The public hearing will be held on Jan. 30 at 6:30 p.m. at the Corning Town Hall. It’s an opportunity for the community to share their thoughts on the proposed merger. 

“We’re looking for input from all of our residents, this will have an impact on how we move forward,” Thomas said. 

Feehan also believes ensuring protection is one of the priorities of the merger. 

“The number one reason why I started this is safety for our firefighters,” Feehan said. “The most valuable resource we have as a town right now are these young men and women.”

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