By Mike Tooley
With the assistance from Sierra County Fire Administrator Paul E. Tooley, two Sierra County fire districts have received better classifications from Insurance Service Organization (ISO), according to reports furnished to The Herald.
ISO collects and evaluates information from communities in the United States on their structure fire suppression capabilities. The data is analyzed by using a Fire Suppression Rating Schedule, and then a Public Protection Classification (PPC) number is assigned to the community. The surveys are conducted whenever it appears that there is a possibility of a classification change. As such, the PPC program provides important, up-to-date information about fire protection services throughout the country.
In the state of New Mexico, fire department funding is also tied-in with ISO ratings. The lower the number, the more money that the State Fire Marshal’s Office provides to the fire district. A class 10 is the worst rating, and is given to departments that have just started. Class 1 is the best rating. There are no Class 1 departments in the State of New Mexico.
Information evaluated by ISO when evaluating a fire district includes emergency reporting (radio dispatch), fire department and water supply.
Hillsboro’s fire district was elevated to class 6/6X, and Povery Creek was elevated to class 8B/10.
Each of the fire districts will see an increase in their yearly budget from the New Mexico State Fire Marshal’s Office as well some residential and commercial buildings in these fire district could see a reduction in their fire insurance cost.
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