North Bend residents split over proposition of new public safety fee

    (Still from SBG Video)

    NORTH BEND, Ore. - Voters in North Bend will soon decide on whether to pay more for public safety in the area.

    In November, voters will be asked to decide the fate of a $25 monthly bill on their utility bill. The money, which would be earmarked for public safety, would go to the North Bend Police and Fire Departments.

    Since 2002, the funding has come from the three percent property tax, but the city says that isn't enough to fill a roughly one $1.5 million gap.

    "General operations; we're talking about personnel, were talking about services, that comes together to the 1.3 and that's what were funding," said Terence O'Conner, the City Administrator.

    This would go to everything from paychecks to functioning squad cars.

    "For an increase in public safety fees, they're getting the assurance that when you call police, police are going to show up," said Chief Robert Kappelman, with the North Bend Police.

    At the Wednesday market, people were a little hesitant to go on camera, but the North Bend residents that we did talk to are torn between having to fork out extra money and understanding the safety value.

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