The St. George Fire Protection District began in 1966 as a non-profit corporation entitled "Village St. George Volunteer Fire Department and Social Club."The trucks were housed at the Village Grocery on Perkins Road. In 1968, the Department constructed its first station at 13686 Perkins Road.
In 1971, the "St. George Fire Protection District" was established by the City/Parish Council. In 1973, a 5-mill property tax was approved by voters to fund the operation of the Department. In 1975, two additional stations, at 9214 Jefferson Highway and 7027 Antioch Road, were constructed. Also in 1975, the District's fire insurance rating was lowered from a Class 10 to a Class 7. This resulted in a 32% reduction in fire insurance premiums.
Throughout the early years the Department was staffed by volunteers who lived within the district. In the late 1970's, St. George began to hire firefighters on a part-time basis to provide adequate coverage during weekday hours. In 1980, the fire rating was reduced again. The Department improved from a Class 7 to a Class 5, resulting in an 18% savings in insurance rates.
In 1984, the fire rating was further lowered to a Class 3, resulting in a 38% insurance reduction. In 1988, the Department constructed a fourth station. It is located at 1506 Seabord Drive.
In the late 1980's, the volunteer force began to dwindle due to increased training requirements. The heightened training requirements were the result of increased national standards and a call volume that topped 2000 calls per year. The reduction in the number of volunteers resulted in the Department being forced to increase the coverage provided by paid part-time firefighters to 24 hours a day. In 1991, the Department constructed its fifth station at 16333 George O'Neal Lane.
A $32 annual fee was approved by voters in 1991. This fee, that is assessed on all homes and businesses, is used as an additional funding source for the Department. When this fee was approved the millage assessment was reduced from 5 to 4 mills. In 1992, the fire station at 9333 Castille Drive was constructed. In 1993, the Department hired six full-time firefighters to augment the part-time and volunteer staff.
In the spring of 1998, the voters of the District approved an additional 6 mill property tax. With the resulting increase in revenue, additional full-time firefighters were hired. Currently all engines are staffed with three full-time trained, professional firefighters 24 hours a day. Due to the increased staffing the Department's fire rating was once again lowered from a Class 3 to a Class 2 which resulted in a 9% decrease in insurance premiums. This Class 2 rating provides the maximum insurance premium savings for homeowners.
The need for increased fire protection services continued to grow as the district's population grew. In 1999, the St. George Fire Department responded to 5,030 emergency calls, as well as performing on-going fire safety inspections, public education programs, and fire and emergency medical related training. By 2005 the number of emergency responses had grown to 7,260. In 2001, the voters of the district renewed the $32 annual fee assessment that had initially begun in 1991.
In 2002, stations 61 (Perkins Road) and 62 (Jefferson Highway) were both remodeled to better accommodate the full-time personnel housed there. These remodelings included new bunkrooms, locker rooms and bathrooms.
In the spring of 2002, the voters of the district passed two property tax measures. The first measure passed is a 1.25 mill tax that is dedicated to employee pay and benefits. The second measure approved is a 1.5 mill tax that is dedicated to a comprehensive five year capital improvements program. The passage of these two proposals will allow the department to continue to attract quality individuals and to provide state of the art equipment for our personnel to serve the citizens of our district.
St. George, in its continual efforts to provide professional fire protection to an ever-growing population, built its seventh fire station at 326 Highlandia Drive. This station opened in December of 2004 and was officially dedicated in February of 2005.
Ground was broken for the eighth fire station, designated Station 64, on Hoo Shoo Too Road in October of 2005. That station was placed into service on July 11, 2006 and was formally dedicated to the memory of Lt. Michael Scott Lamana, USN. "Scotty" Lamana was a former St. George Firefighter who perished at the Pentagon on September 11, 2001.
The additional manpower needed to staff that station was provided by a new class of 21 cadets who were hired and began their Fire Academy training in January of 2006. That class graduated on June 26, 2006. A second 2006 Fire Academy began training in September. Those recruits graduated in March 2007. Another academy is slated for the fall of 2007.



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