Isanti Fire District sees 10-year high in runs

The Isanti Fire District has had a very busy year.

The Isanti City Council heard the annual report from Isanti Fire District at its March 2 meeting.

Isanti Fire Chief Al Jankovich presented the report, telling the council there are currently 28 firefighters totaling 187 years of experience. The average years of experience per firefighter is seven.

There were a total of 1,034 fire calls in 2020, with 468 of them being in the City of Isanti, according to Jankovich. This is the most fire calls in one year for the last 10 years of fire calls.

“We’ve had a few dips along the way,” said Jankovich, “but overall we are on the rise. That’s no surprise as our populations are also up.”

The report broke down the fire calls by incident type, with the majority of calls being for rescue and emergency medical services at 649. 

Throughout 2020 firefighters participated in many different trainings, including several related to firefighter safety in the midst of the COVID-19 pandemic, Jankovich informed the council. 

“It (the list of training sessions) looks a little different in 2020,” Jankovich said. “We took a lot of impromptu trainings to get up to speed with the pandemic and how we could best protect ourselves while still doing our job.”

Isanti Fire District covers an area of 157 square miles, which includes 5,853 households, an estimated population of 16,133, and a valuation of approximately $1.7 billion, according to the report.

The report stated the district’s 2020 budget was $632,785, of which $84,729 was from grant income. It also provided a list of assets owned by Isanti Fire District.

The report concluded with a breakdown of fire calls by incident within the City of Isanti itself, which included nine calls for fire, 311 calls for rescue and emergency medical service, 13 calls for hazardous conditions, 16 calls for other types of services, 93 good intent calls, and 26 calls for false alarms.

The City of Isanti’s contribution to the district’s budget in 2020 was $238,077, which is 38% of the district’s total budget. Fire calls within the City of Isanti accounted for 45% of the district’s total calls in 2020.

Following the report, the City Council approved the lease purchase agreement for the building that currently houses the Isanti Fire District in the amount of $600,000, which will be paid in increments through 2025. Previously, the Isanti Fire District leased the building from the city.

Council approves new fees for food trucks

The council approved amending its fee schedule regarding food truck fees and background investigation fees. Background investigation fees will now be $35, and food truck fees will be $10 per day, $50 per month, or $130 yearly.

Odds and ends

In other business, the council:

•Approved the renewal of several liquor and pawn shop licenses for local businesses.

•Approved the 2021 goals and organizational chart.

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