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From: John De Armond
Newsgroups: rec.outdoors.rv-travel
Date: Sun, 29 Jan 2006 17:53:40 -0500
Message-ID: <>

On Sun, 29 Jan 2006 10:34:37 -0700, "Bruce" <>

>In Maricopa county Arizona there is a paid, privately owned fire department.
>I worked for them almost 35 years ago (for a very short time as a
>dispatcher), so I am sure their fee schedule has changed, but at that time,
>they charged a yearly subscription fee - usually pretty cheap, like $25.  If
>you were a subscriber, they showed up at your  house and put the fire out
>for free - a very good deal.  If you were not a subscriber, they showed up
>at the fire and asked if you wanted them to put the fire out.  If you said
>yes and signed the appropriate paperwork, they put the fire out and billed
>you a portion of the amount saved - for example if it was a $100,000 house
>and they managed to save it with only $10,000  in damage, they saved $90,000
>and billed a portion of that - !0% I think.   If you refused to sign the
>payment agreement, they watched the house burn down - which usually voided
>the homeowners fire insurance, since the homeowner refused to let the fire
>department put the fire out.  I though this was a very good business model
>and the fire department did a very good job.  Rural Metro Fire Department is
>now also the official fire department of the City of Scottsdale.

I think this is a great model.  I've lived in an area with a private,
professional fire department.  I'd love to see government-operated
fire departments eliminated everywhere.  I know ours spends far more
than that per household, much of that on frivolous and un-necessary
stuff.  For example, they roll a half million dollar aerial truck to
every single call just to have its stash of SCBA bottles at the scene.
I bet a commercial department would find a van to load those bottles

I've lived in a couple of places where another sacred city function
was private - garbage service.  Invariably the service was cheaper and
MUCH better than what the city provided.  In Atlanta I lived at the
end of a 150 yard driveway.  The private service came down my
driveway, around back, got my cans from their storage place, emptied
them, put them back up and put the lids on.  If they ever slacked off,
they got one warning, then I hired another contractor.  With the
service we have here in Cleveland, I'm lucky when the cans don't end
up in the middle of the street.


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