INDIAN ROCKS BEACH – Not brought to sufficient public attention perhaps is the main bone of contention that sticks in the craw of the officials in the cities served by the Pinellas Suncoast Fire & Rescue District.
To overcome that deficiency, the plaintiffs in the recently dismissed lawsuit against the fire district, have made clear that the biggest complaint being leveled against the district is that it operates a station that is outside the district.
This, they strongly contend, violates the district charter which prohibits spending tax money outside the district.
There is no dispute that PSF&R operates the Redington station which is well outside the district which includes Belleair Shore, Belleair Beach, Indian Rocks Beach, Indian Shores and a portion of the mainland south of Ulmerton Road and west of Vonn Road.
The area served by the Redington station does not pay any taxes or fees the district. Therefore the plaintiffs in the recent case – Mayor Bill Ockunzzi Indian Rocks Beach, Patti Muneio, Ed Piniero and Bert Valery – argued that dollars from residents of the district should not pay for buildings, equipment or services outside the district.
The Pinellas County Circuit Court dismissed with prejudice the lawsuit after granting the district’s motion for summary judgment.
Although the fire district reportedly suggested to county authorities that the county take it over, the district actually is the creature of the state Legislature and any action regarding the district must be taken in Tallahassee.
Return to Home Page
Return to Current Edition