Fire Service District expands

Published 6:47 pm Friday, May 7, 2021

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JACKSON – The Gaston Fire Service District will soon be expanding in size.

The Northampton County Board of Commissioners approved a resolution at a public hearing here on May 3 which will annex the town of Gaston so that it will be included in the Gaston Fire Service District. The change will take effect on July 1, 2021.

With the inclusion to the district, property owners in the town will now be subject to a tax levy of $0.075 per $100 of property valuation for fire protection services.

This process began last year with a referendum on the ballot to allow a property tax levy for fire protection services. During the Nov. 2020 general election, Gaston town citizens passed the referendum with a vote of 202 in favor and 189 against.

Following that, the Gaston Town Commissioners adopted a resolution of support for the annexation.

“The town of Gaston is surrounded entirely by the Gaston Fire Service District,” explained Northampton County Attorney Scott McKellar as he presented the information to the county commissioners on Monday.

No members of the public submitted comments about the topic at the hearing, and there was no discussion by the commissioners either.

At the conclusion of his presentation, McKellar stated that the Board had met all the pre-requisites for the annexation procedure according to the state statute. He recommended approving the resolution.

The commissioners did just that with a unanimous vote, with the exception of Commissioner Geneva Faulkner who was unable to attend the public hearing. Commissioner Kelvin Edwards provided the motion to approve, and Commissioner Nicole Boone seconded.