The Marysville City Council on Wednesday moved toward pursuing a new fire service model, a Regional Fire Authority. The Council unanimously approved establishing a planning committee with the City of Arlington to explore the formation of an RFA and inviting Fire District 12 to participate as well.
Arlington and Marysville have been exploring similar issues over the past year: how to provide sustainable, quality fire services at a level our neighboring communities have come to expect.
For nearly 25 years, fire and EMS services in Marysville have been provided by the Marysville Fire District, a contract entity created through interlocal agreement between the City of Marysville and Snohomish County Fire District 12.
“This commitment is an important first step toward a mutually beneficial partnership,” said Marysville Mayor Jon Nehring. “I am impressed by the careful deliberation of our City Council and the commitment of all stakeholders to do what is best for the public we serve.”
As background, the Marysville Fire District approached the City in 2013 with concerns about long-term funding and asked for consideration of forming an RFA. A committee of three Marysville City Council members and the three District 12 Fire Commissioners was charged with developing solutions to ensure the long-term viability of fire and EMS protection.
For the past year the City Council has weighed several options including an RFA, a city fire department, and restructuring the current interlocal agreement with District 12.
Monday’s City Council action establishes an RFA planning committee to begin discussions with Arlington. Arlington Mayor Barbara Tolbert and City Administrator Paul Ellis spoke in favor of that direction at the City Council meeting. It also asks District 12 to decide by mid-September whether it will participate in the RFA effort.