Dexter Fire Station 1 tour
DEXTER, MI – This November, Dexter voters will decide the fate of an $8.4-million bond proposal funding the renovation or replacement of its 1950s-era fire station.
To give them a chance to learn more about that choice, officials are hosting a public information session for residents.
The meeting will take place at 6 p.m. on Thursday, Oct. 13 at the fellowship hall in St. Andrew’s United Church of Christ, 7610 Ann Arbor St. in Dexter, with virtual participation also available via Zoom.
Elected leaders, Dexter Area Fire Department representatives and architects with Partners in Architecture, the firm working with the city on public safety facility designs, will be present to answer questions.
Michigan campaign finance law prevents cities from using public resources to advocate in favor of millages and bond proposals, but they can share factual information related to the proposal. Dexter officials have prepared an information sheet on the local ballot measure.
Dexter leaders have discussed fire station improvements for several years, and a similar bond proposal was slated for the May 2020 ballot before being withdrawn in the early months of the COVID-19 pandemic.
The 2022 proposal comes with an estimated 2-mill property tax hike, equivalent to $2 on every $1,000 of taxable value, which would supplement $1 million in general fund dollars city leaders have already dedicated toward construction costs.
Read more: Dexter leaders vote to bring $8.4M bond proposal for fire station to voters in November
The 10,000-square-foot fire hall and Washtenaw County Sheriff’s Office substation at 8140 Main Street in Dexter was built in the mid-1950s and is “functionally obsolete,” or unable to meet the needs of a modern fire and rescue station, according to an “opportunity statement” Dexter City Council adopted while discussing the bond proposal this year.
City leaders have not yet decided whether to renovate the Main Street station or construction a brand-new facility on property the city purchased for that purpose in 2019 at the intersection of Dexter-Ann Arbor Road and Meadow View Drive, referred to in some Dexter city documents as the MAV property.
They say the bond would increase firefighters’ operational capacity, allow for larger firefighting vehicles and expand space for training, gear maintenance and office staff, while also boosting the capacity of police operations, like increasing office space for the security of sensitive information.
Architects working for the city have prepared conceptual plans and cost estimates for each option in alignment with the bond proposal on the November ballot, and they will be available at the Thursday meeting.
“Those are to show there’s more than one way to do this,” Dexter Mayor Shawn Keough said during City Council’s Monday, Oct. 10 meeting, where elected officials discussed preparations for the public information session.
The big decision the Council has made at this point is to seek the public’s backing for the $8.4-milllion proposal, he said.
For information from Dexter officials on the bond proposal, click here.
More from The Ann Arbor News:
25 proposals headed to Washtenaw County voters in November
Will Dexter elect 2nd mayor in city history or keep incumbent? Meet the candidates
Meet the candidates running for the Dexter School Board in November
New map shows progress toward bringing broadband to all of rural Washtenaw County
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Dexter Fire Station 1 tour