THE FOX LAKE FIRE PROTECTION DISTRICT PROUDLY PROTECTS
AN AREA OF 30 SQUARE MILES.
Founded in 1908, the Fox Lake Fire Protection District proudly employs highly trained men and women in all aspects of firefighting and emergency medical services. All members must attend trainings throughout the year to keep their certifications up to date. The men and women of the Fox Lake Fire Protection District are very dedicated to providing the highest quality fire and EMS service around. We are very active within the community and our members participate in various events year round. We attend block parties, teach fire safety to people of all ages, hold CPR and First Aid classes, install car seats, and hold an annual open house. The area we protect is very unique in the fact that it goes all the way to the Wisconsin border on Wilmot Road, to the entrance of the Fish Lake Beach Campgrounds on Route 12, to the area of
Baxter Laboratories by Wilson Road and Route 120. The Lake/McHenry Counties border to the west and the Avon and Lake Villa Townships border on the East. Our fire protection district encompasses 30 square miles and has a population of approximately 33,000 people which more than doubles in the summer months. We operate out of three stations that protect a primarily residential area. Our call volume has been increasing on a yearly basis due to the increased number of residential homes being built and the newly opened businesses within our district. The men and women of the Fox Lake Fire Protection District pride themselves in not only providing the best Fire and EMS services, but also being positive role models within the community.
A MESSAGE FROM THE CHIEF
Dear Residents Of The Fox Lake Fire Protection District,
Chief Ed Lescher
The Fox Lake Fire DepartmentHas Been Serving The Village Of Fox Lake & Surrounding Communities For Over 106 Years.
The certificate for the Articles of Association of the Fox Lake Volunteer Fire Department was sent downstate in 1908. The Charter was issued in Springfield on November 27 , 1908, and it is this date which the Department has considered as its anniversary.
In 1938 a group of citizens in the unincorporated area surrounding the Village of Fox Lake proposed that the Fox Lake Fire Protection District become a taxing body, with a Corporate (Fire)Tax created, and the tax money going for fire protection expenses that were being provided by the Fox Lake Volunteer Fire Department.
In 1972 the department was no longer a fully volunteer fire department when part time Firefighter/ Emergency Medical Technician Ken Suckow was hired as the first full time employee of the department. Today there are 30 certified full time Firefighters/ Paramedics/EMT’s on the roster.
In 1975 the department was certified as a provider of Advanced Life Support, which designated the newest ambulance as a Mobile Intensive Care Unit. We now have five of these vehicles in service today. Along with the certification, four personnel completed their training and were certified as Fox Lake’s first paramedics. Bill Renaker, Chuck Gast, Major Hill, and Don Rasmussen were followed later in the year by four more members that received their certification.
Due to the growth in the area and the amount of equipment needed to serve the residents, in 1975 the Fox Lake Volunteer Fire Department paid for a new fire station to be built at 306 Washington Avenue (Station #2), which is one block north of the original station on Washington. This serves as our Headquarters Station and is manned around the clock, 365 days a year. We currently have twelve response vehicles in this station to handle any kind of emergency call.
On April 8, 1978, the Village and District residents were asked to vote on a referendum to establish a property tax levy for the purpose of supporting our Rescue Squad and paramedic program. The voters approved the Ambulance Tax for both the Village of Fox Lake and the Fox Lake Fire Protection District, which are two separate taxing bodies. This was approved by an almost 2-1 margin.
The area we protect is very unique in the fact that it goes from the Wisconsin border to the North (Wilmot Road), to the entrance of Fish Lake Campground on Route 12 and Route 120 by Baxter Laboratories at the South end, the Lake/McHenry Counties border to the West, and the Avon and Lake Villa Township borders on the East. This encompasses over 30 square miles and a population of approximately 33,000 residents. The citizens in our protection area are in or part of two counties (Lake and McHenry), four townships (Grant, Antioch, McHenry, Burton), and four villages (Fox Lake, Volo, Lakemoor, Round Lake). This growth resulted in building two additional fire stations. In 1990 the Fire Protection District built Station #3 on Molidor Road. This station is kept very busy because of the amount of homes and businesses that have been built over the last two decades, along with the amount of vehicles that travel on Routes 12, 120, 134 and Wilson Road.
Due to the expansion of the Village of Fox Lake's border to the north and the increase in population in the Grass Lake Road/ State park Road areas, the Village and District built Station #4 in the year 2000, which is located at 911 Main Street. Both Stations #3 & #4 have a minimum of three Firefighter/paramedics on duty 24 hours a day, 365 days a year. Our original Station #1 on McKinley Avenue was taken out of service because it no longer was able to house the equipment and members that are needed to staff a station.
In 2007 the Fox Lake Fire protection District assumed the responsibilities of operating the Fox Lake Fire Department. Through the years the unincorporated area has surpassed the Village of Fox Lake's population and area to be protected. This was a smooth transformation of duties and was unanimously agreed upon by all of the elected/appointed officials from both units of government. It did not change anything regarding our response to emergencies, training, vehicle repair and replacement, and the personnel needed to provide the best service possible to all.
In April of 2015 the Fox Lake Fire Protection District residents were asked for an ambulance tax increase referendum. The district needed the additional monies to continue to provide the service the residents have come to expect. With soaring costs to operate an ambulance service, the district needed the increased revenue to maintain staff to provide the best service possible. At the time of the referendum, Fox Lake had the lowest established ambulance tax in Lake County. This is the first time the district residents had ever been asked for an increase to the ambulance tax since it was established in 1978. The residents voted overwhelmingly to approve the increase to the ambulance tax rate.
In March of 2016 the Village of Fox Lake went to the voters to ask a public question on joining the Fox Lake Fire Protection District. Prior to this public question, the Village of Fox Lake had a contract with the fire district to provide fire and ambulance service to the entire village. The question put to the voters, was to have the entire village be under the direction of the fire district for fire and ambulance service and cut out the “middle man” which was the village. The Mayor of Fox Lake wanted to keep the politics out of the fire department and championed the effort. The voting residents of the Village of Fox Lake overwhelmingly voted in favor of this move.
MISSION & VISION
The Fox Lake Fire Protection District Is Committed To Keeping The Community Informed And Providing The Best Service Possible.
The mission of the Fox Lake Fire Protection District is to provide timely and skilled emergency medical services, property protection, and crisis intervention in the most professional and empathetic manner to the public we serve.
Members of the Fox Lake Fire Protection District will continue to provide excellent service through utilizing and developing our members to their fullest potential, maximizing available resources, and being responsive to the changing dynamics of our customers.
Our Guiding Principles
Public servants are held in high esteem by the customer with lofty expectations of service delivery. Our member’s are life and property savers and are entrusted to react instantly, unselfishly, compassionately and professionally to a person’s emergency. Thus, members of the Fox Lake Fire Protection District shall be guided by these core principles:
To Our Community:
We are dedicated to providing quality service to the community we serve, demonstrating integrity, courage, pride, and leadership. We hold ourselves to high standards of professionalism, continually striving to improve our level of services.
To the Fire District:
We are committed to serving our community through individual responsibility and accountability. Working as a team and continually pursuing excellence through education and safety we will create a safe living environment.
We owe ourselves personal and professional growth. We will seek new knowledge and greater challenges, and strive to remain at the leading edge of our profession, while maintaining our values and high moral character.