'Pay for spray' under fire in county
OBION COUNTY, Tn. - The "pay for spray" fire fee in Obion County could end or at least be shifted to other agenices or cities to oversee the policy.
"When we first started this, I mean it took up practically all of my summer," County Clerk Vollie Boehms said.
Boehms spends much of her time looking over thousands of pages of fire subscription fees.
"I worked late at nights. I worked weekends, including part of Sundays. I mean it's been extremely busy," she said. And it's keeping her staff busy too. So much so she says it's taking up too much time.
"I've tried ever since the beginning to say this is not working the way I had thought it would have," she said.
The problem Boehms said is the county isn't even legally obligated to collect the fee for people living in county limits, despite entering into an agreement with seven cities last year.
"This was actually set up improperly. There's no statutory authority for the county to collect the subscription fees for the city," Boehms said.
She believes since the cities respond to fires, they should collect the fee or have everyone pay a fire tax based on property values.
"If you had the fire tax, then that means everyone would pay their fair share and there would be no question whether the fire departments go," she said.
Boehms said even 911 operators are having a hard time managing who's paid for the fee and she doesn't want her office to take the fall if a mistake is made.
"Something that I don't feel like would be very easy to love with the rest of my life - someone died because of an error," Boehms said.
County commissioners will meet on Monday, May 21st to go over other fire options.