At its meeting on Tuesday, August 15, the Jupiter Town Council directed Town staff to create the Jupiter Fire Rescue Department (JFRD) to deliver excellent levels of service at a lower, more sustainable cost to residents and businesses. This direction came after 15 months of negotiations with Palm Beach County Fire Rescue and an exhaustive feasibility study by the Center for Public Safety Management (CPSM). Read the full study here Version OptionsFire RescueHeadline, and view a summary presentation here Version OptionsFire RescueHeadline. Version OptionsFire RescueHeadline Version OptionsFire RescueHeadline Version OptionsFire RescueHe
JFRD WILL PROVIDE LOCAL CONTROL
Creating the new JFRD will allow the Jupiter Town Council to have local control over costs, operations, and levels of service. It will also allow the Council to make fiscally-responsible decisions on behalf of Jupiter’s residents and businesses, and will significantly decrease the cost of fire rescue and emergency services compared to what is charged by Palm Beach County Fire Rescue (PBCFR), currently and into the future.
Over the 10-year timeframe of the current interlocal agreement, Jupiter taxpayers will save approximately $68 million by establishing the JFRD.
In 2024, a homesteaded property valued at $550,000 will pay about $951 to PBCFR for fire rescue services. In the first year of operation of the JFRD (2026), the same homesteaded Jupiter property would pay about $533 for fire rescue services.
The Town of Jupiter has always done an exceptional job at managing its financial position, which will allow the Town to start the JFRD through a combination of cash, financial debt, and ad valorem taxes. Even when start-up costs and financing costs are incorporated, Jupiter residents and businesses will pay far less in taxes once the JFRD is operational than they currently pay to PBCFR for the same service.
CULTURE OF EXCELLENCE
The Town of Jupiter has established a culture of excellence in regards to public safety. The Jupiter Police Department sets this benchmark every day, and JFRD will start its service from a position of excellence on day one.
The Town estimates that it will take approximately three years to build the JFRD, with service beginning in 2026. The Town will receive fire rescue and EMS services from PBCFR until that time under the current interlocal agreement.