The York Volunteer Fire Department’s emergency response area expanded this week following a vote of the Lewis and Clark County Commission.
Commissioners voted unanimously Tuesday to allow annexation of land north and east of York’s previous service area – a move proposed by local firefighters to better respond to emergency calls. The annexed area is largely Helena-Lewis and Clark National Forest along with a handful of private parcels with cabins. It does not include any additional taxes.
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York Fire Chief John Naylor said the annexation includes areas the department typically responds to as it is the closest fire department, but remained under the primary jurisdiction of Lewis and Clark County. Naylor estimated York is able to respond to emergencies in the annexed area twice as fast as the county. Allowing York directly to dispatch will save additional time for a response, he said.