Local officials dedicated Howard County's 12th fire station at a small ceremony on Monday morning.
The 10,000-square-foot, $3.8 million fire station will service western Howard County and will employ 41 firefighters. The Glenwood station is the first entirely new station to be built in the county since 1994, according to the fire department.
The station caused some controversy earlier this year when the County Council voted to raise the fire tax from 13.55 cents per $100 of assessed value in the eastern part of the county and 11.55 cents in the western part, to a unified tax of 17.6 cents, which will help pay for the new station's expenses.
The additional tax is expected to generate $63.1 million in Fiscal Year 2012 and $78.1 million in FY 2013, according to Raymond S. Wacks, the Howard County Budget Administrator. The additional funds would pay for the new staff at the Glenwood station and offset lost revenue from declining real estate assessments, according to Wacks.
The new station has three truck bays, sleeping quarters for eight firefighters, an exercise room, kitchen and dining room and offices, according to the fire department.
Howard County Executive Ken Ulman and HCDFRS Chief William Goddard helped lead the dedication ceremony on Monday.
"Proud to be in western [Howard County] for the dedication of the Glenwood fire station," wrote Ken Ulman on Facebook. "Response times are critical & this station will fill an important void to help save lives faster."
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