Community members riled up after Wabash Township proposed tax hike gets delayed

The Wabash Township Board is delaying the process of the 2020 budget.

Posted: Oct 15, 2019 11:33 PM

WEST LAFAYETTE, Ind. (WLFI) -- The Wabash Township Board is delaying the process of the 2020 budget.

Tuesday's meeting was met with controversy from community members as they felt their questions were left unanswered, specifically ones about the Wabash Township Volunteer Fire Department.

As we previously reported Township Trustee Jennifer Teising said the Wabash Township Volunteer Fire Department is five years behind in hiring staff and it's running low on resources.

The proposed budgets said WTFD can hire hire two full-time firefighters with health care and retirement benefits which no other full-time firefighters receive.

It also includes funds for part-time staff.

Community members argue the budget is asking too much for the fire department.

They want more budget transparency.

With less volunteers than years prior and more demand, Fire Chief Ed Ward said something has got to give.

"The hard part of what we do is deal with the political aspects of town government of township government," said Ward. "We all deal with that political aspect of the job. The advantage is most people, when it comes to public safety, they understand there is a need. They understand the need for more police, more firefighters, more paramedics more fill in the blank."

Town leaders said they tried to get funding from the county when it passed a public safety income tax hike, but it wasn't approved.

The next meeting will be October 29th at 6 p.m. at fire station 1 in Wabash Township.

For a look at Wabash Township's proposed budget click here. 

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