GEORGETOWN, Del – Over $4 million of Sussex County’s 2020 budget will go to the 21.5 fire departments within its borders. The largest line item is Fire Service Discretionary ($2,057,000) Based on the policy of the Sussex County Volunteer Firefighters Association, 75% of that amount is equally distributed while the departments receive the remainder based on run volume.
It is a dollar amount that is not satisfactory for Lewes Fire Department President Craig Stephens. “We feel they can do more for the volunteer service,” Stephens told WRDE. “The appropriation is rather small compared to other agencies.
Stephens would like to see a greater emphasis placed on run volume. In 2018, Lewes had a combined 5,040 for Fire and Emergency Medical. For comparison, Dagsboro had 627.
“Some fire companies do not want any change (to the equal distribution policy),” Sussex County Volunteer Firefighters Association President Hunter Holland said. “The east coast (departments) that are impacted by tourists want a change.”
The opportunity to alter the policy could begin in July when seven representatives from the county’s fire departments and two council members will meet to discuss how funds from future budgets will be distributed. Click on this link for the full 2020 Sussex County