Snohomish County Fire Protection District 17 (the District) received a clean audit report for 2005-2007. The audit is part of a regular review of District finances and financial practices by the Washington State Auditor’s Office every three years. “We’re very pleased with the results of the audit” said Chief Rick Hjelle. “We have been good stewards of our customers’ tax dollars and will continue with being fiscally responsible.” The District will ask voters to renew its Emergency Medical Services (EMS) levy during the August 18th Primary Election. The current EMS levy expires at the end of 2009. Voters will be asked to renew the levy for six years at the regular rate of .50-cents per $1,000 of assessed valuation. The owner of a $215,000 home, considered the average home value in the District, would pay $107.50 per year. That is just under $9 per month for 24-hour emergency medical service. “We’ve worked hard to be as transparent as possible,” said Hjelle. “It’s important for our taxpayers to know that we value their support; spend each dollar wisely; and, continually strive to provide efficient and affordable emergency medical service.” The Washington State Auditor visited with the District staff in November of 2008. The audit covered the areas of cash receipts and revenues; expenditures and vouchers; insurance and bonding; compensation to officials and staff; competitive bid laws; ethics and conflicts of interest; and, compliance with the Open Public Meetings Act. In the final report, the District had no findings or management letter items. District residents are invited to review the report at the Granite Falls Fire Department, 116 South Granite Avenue during regular business hours, Monday through Friday from 9:00 am to 5:00 pm. The next audit for the District is scheduled for 2011 for the years 2008-2010. It will cover accountability for public resources and compliance with laws and regulations. Snohomish County Fire District 17, also known as the Granite Falls Fire Department, formed in 1958 to provide protection to farms and mills around the City of Granite Falls. Today, it provides fire protection and emergency medical service to 11,700 citizens across 38.5 square miles, including the city which annexed into the District in 1987. The District takes great pride in the 40 volunteer firefighters working alongside the 10 full-time employees to provide 24-hour a day fire and emergency medical care.