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Second time is the charm for Wilson County’s third ESD
STOCKDALE -- The second attempt at creating an emergency-services district (ESD) serving a significant portion of eastern Wilson County that borders Guadalupe, Gonzales, and Karnes counties has proven successful. More than 2,023 registered voters cast ballots in the election Nov. 6.
According to the unofficial grand totals from the Wilson County Elections Office, 1,485 votes were cast in favor, while just 538 were cast in opposition. No votes were cast in the election from the city of Nixon, and just one vote against was cast in that city’s extraterritorial jurisdiction.
But in the city of Stockdale and communities such as Sutherland Springs, Pandora, Denhawken, and Kosciusko, the measure won overwhelming support. A complete breakdown is at right.
“I was glad it passed,” said David Rice, EMS Director for the Stockdale Emergency Medical Services (EMS). “I’m not going to say I wasn’t surprised.”
In May 2011, an attempt at creating an ESD for both fire and ambulance protection for the same area failed by a vote of 200-175. Because of a shortage of both volunteers and funding, Stockdale EMS shut down during much of the month of October 2011. A second petition drive was launched earlier this year, which resulted in the measure being placed on the ballot for the November election.
“If this didn’t pass, having an ambulance service in Stockdale in January wasn’t going to happen,” Rice said.
Approval of the Wilson County ESD No. 3 means that residents of that district will incur an ad valorem tax of up to 10 cents per $100 of assessed property value, which will be used solely to fund emergency medical services. The actual tax rate could be less than 10 cents. The new ESD will not see the proceeds of that tax collection until the 2014 fiscal year. But before any of this happens, the Wilson County Commissioners Court must select a five-member board to govern the ESD.
“This was a long road to get to where we are now,” Rice said. “We’ve got an even longer one ahead of us.”
Wilson County ESD No. 3 election results
Voters living in an area of Wilson County that borders Karnes, Gonzales, and Guadalupe counties were asked to decide whether to create the county’s third emergency-services district. Here are the results from the five areas that participated in the election:
Rural area............1,173... 463
City of Stockdale..285...... 68
ETJ of Stockdale...27........6
City of Nixon.......0...........0
ETJ of Nixon........0...........1
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