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On May 9, 2009 the citizens of East Lake Buchanan, voted to create ESD No5 to provide fire protection and first responder medical service for the District. The District is located along the east side of Lake Buchanan.
What is an Emergency Service District (ESD)?
An ESD is a political subdivision of the State of Texas, authorized by law to levy a District property tax for providing emergency services to the District. An ESD can levy a tax of up to $0.10 per $100 dollars of property value.
The ESD is governed by a Board of five Emergency Services Commissioners that are appointed by the Burnet County Commissioner’s Court. The ESD Board is responsible for managing the tax money collected and managing the development of emergency services in the district. ESD’s are created under the Texas Health and Safety Code, Chapter 775. As a political subdivision of the state, an ESD may:
  • Acquire, purchase, hold, lease, manage, occupy, and sell real and personal property or and interestin property;
  • enter into and perform necessary contracts; -appoint and employ necessary officers, agents and employees;
  • sue and be sued;
  • impose and collect taxes as prescribed by this chapter;
  • accept and receive donations;
  • lease, own, maintain, operate, and provide emergency services vehicles and other necessary or proper apparatus, instrumentalities, equipment, and machinery to provide emergency services;
  • construct, lease, own, and maintain real property, improvements, and fixtures necessary to house, repair and maintain emergency services vehicles and equipment;
  • contract with other entities, including other districts or municipalities, to make emergency services facilities and emergency services available to the ESD;
  • contract with other entities, including other districts or municipalities, for reciprocal operation of services and facilities if the contracting parties find that reciprocal operation would be mutually beneficial and not detrimental to the ESD,
  • borrow money;
  • adopt a sales and use tax; -adopt and enforce a fire code; -create the office of a fire marshal;
  • set rules and regulations regarding the investigation of the cause or origin of fires; -bill for services and;
  • perform other acts necessary to carry out the intent of this chapter.
Why is this important to the citizens in the District?
With the formation of ESD No5, it will now be possible to provide the funding and support to have the fire protection and emergency rescue services needed by our growing community. Currently only 1% of the property owners support our Fire Department financially. By having an ESD in our District, all of the property owners will pay an equitable fee for the service. We will be able to improve our fire and rescue service with training for the fire fighters and provide needed equipment. As the improvements occur, it may be possible to lower the District’s ISO ratings and reduce the home owner’s insurance costs.
Your volunteer fire department is made up of your neighbors and friends in the community. For many years they have been able to provide fire protection in the “District” with limited funds, limited training and limited equipment. When they were not fighting fires, they were busy taking care of their equipment, trying to raise money to fund the department and taking care of their families. They have done an excellent job and everyone in the District should be thankful that we have citizens who will make the sacrifices and commitment that a volunteer fire fighter makes to help others.
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