Missing clause in fire contract gives Franklin Twp. trustees pause

11:12 p.m Wednesday, Sept. 13, 2017 Local News
A Middletown fire engine responds to call from the station on Dixie Highway. The station was obtained by the city from Franklin Twp. when the area around Towne Mall was annexed in 1996. Since then, the city of Middletown has been contracted by Franklin Twp. to provide fire protection services for a small area of the township that is bordered by the Butler/Warren county line, Interstate 75, Manchester and Coles roads. ED RICHTER/STAFF FILE PHOTO

Franklin Twp. trustees opted not to approve a fire contract renewal after having some reservations.

Last week, Middletown City Council approved a 10-year renewal of its contract to provide fire suppression services for areas of Franklin Twp. south of Manchester Road, north of Central Avenue/Coles Road, and west of Interstate 75.

“The Board of Trustees had reservations about a 10-year contract with no termination clause,” said Traci Stivers, township administrator. “… I will be contacting Middletown to see if they will agree to a termination clause.”

MORE: Middletown considering renewal of fire contract with Franklin Twp.

Since the 1996 annexation of the Towne Mall area, Middletown has provided fire suppression services for a small portion of Franklin Twp. under a contracted rate per fire run for the unincorporated area of the township adjacent to the city.

City officials said during the annexation process, an agreement was negotiated between the city and the township that resulted in the city receiving the former township fire station on South Dixie Highway. Another provision of this agreement called for Middletown to provide suppression duties to portions of Franklin Township formerly served by this station. At the time, the township paid the city $300 for each fire run.

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Middletown Fire Chief Paul Lolli recommended renewing the contract for another 10 years with no changes with the costs per fire run remaining at $425. However, the new agreement has a provision that contract rate shall be subject to renegotiation at the end of the fifth year of the agreement.