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Districts get hitched
"HANSVILLE - Voters Tuesday overwhelmingly said I do support the union of Fire Protection District 14 and North Kitsap Fire & Rescue. It was a landslide. Nearly 87 percent of the voters in Fire District 14 supported the merger of the two districts, which will go into effect Jan. 1, 2001. As of New Year's Day, Hansville residents will have a 24-hour manned station which will provide improved fire protection service. Currently there are two paid staff members at the Twin Spits station during business hours and volunteer firefighters are on call during the night. Commissioners from both districts heard the election news Tuesday night during their joint meeting in Hansville. Applause and congratulatory handshakes were shared. Although commissioners seemed pleased with the vote, the firefighters were overjoyed. I have been saying this was the thing to do for the past five or six years, said District 14 Capt. Allan Voves. He has worked for the district for more than 11 years, serving first as a volunteer. Operationally it makes perfect sense, he said. NKF&R officials agree. It's something that its time has come, said Chief Paul Nichol. Last spring, District 14 voters approved a tax levy lid in anticipation that the districts would move toward a merger. Now the two fire districts are making steps to make the marriage bond as seamless as possible. But, working as one unit will take some getting used to. There are little rough edges to smooth out, Voves said referring to minor procedural differences between the now joined districts. Even when the Hansville Fire Protection District disappears, Voves said it won't be out of their minds or sight. We plan to have a remembrance wall at the new station, he said. "