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To the Editor:

I am writing to remind the citizens of Mt. Juliet that our city commissioners will vote again, on Sept. 28, to hire nine new firefighters/first responders. It takes two readings of any budget adjustment to be approved.

At the Sept. 14 meeting Commissioners Justice, Maness, Giles and Milele all voted YES to immediately hire the nine firefighters. Since it takes two readings to ultimately pass a budget adjustment, I urge Mt. Juliet citizens to contact their respective commissioner to urge them to vote YES one more time. The need is great, and it is now.

Mt. Juliet has 21 fulltime firefighters compared to Lebanon which has 76 fulltime firefighters, La Vergne has 50 fulltime firefighters and Germantown has 62 fulltime firefighters. A national average, as identified by the National Fire Protection Association is 1.81 firefighters per 1,000 population. The current average for Mt. Juliet is 0.55 firefighters per 1,000 population.

Please remind your commissioner when you contact them that the budget, which they develop and pass, is a reflection of their values. It is what they believe to be important. Hopefully, the safety of our citizens is at the top of the list.

Byron Kamp

Mt. Juliet

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