Benton Township Volunteer Fire Department Seal

Benton Township Volunteer Fire Department

Monroe County, Indiana | Established 1979

Thank you for your support!

Dearest Citizens of Benton Township,

Members of the Benton Township Volunteer Fire Department have worked diligently protecting lives and property in and around this township for many years. This service has been inexpensive compared to the contract costs with Bloomington Township - not to mention the fire territory option that was on the table! Our goal for 2017 and beyond is to provide fire and EMS coverage equivalent to, if not better than, years past.

You may have heard that a significant price increase for the contract with Bloomington Township could eliminate their automatic mutual aid we have had in the past. This would put all of us at a greater risk of long response times - especially during daytime hours when all of the volunteer firefighters are at their jobs. It is also possible that our homeowner’s insurance will increase if that happens.

Fire and emergency medical services are not cheap, despite the fact they have been very affordable for Benton Township in the past. Our volunteer fire department is a big reason we have one of the lowest tax rates in Monroe County. Unless we get a significant number of people stepping up to join as volunteers something will have to change. We see a few options for the future:

  1. Get more volunteers! We need people who are willing to become trained firefighters, first responders, and/or EMTs available to respond during the typical workday hours. This option will be the least expensive in the long run but will entail initial expense to the township for training and outfitting new recruits.
  2. Look for other departments with which to contract mutual aid response. This can work, but it will certainly create longer response times and higher costs, both short-term and long-term.
  3. Raise taxes, sell bonds, write grants, etc. to fund a staffed station. This is a significantly more expensive option but will yield much quicker response times and better insurance rates. Ultimately, this would ideally be our long-term goal.
  4. Eliminate services. Technically, the township does not have to provide medical assistance. Data and experience confirm that well over half of our calls are for medical emergencies where response time is critical. The community standard of care is for the fire department to respond to all emergencies in rural areas as we have done in the past. If the community, board, and/or trustee decide that it is not worth volunteering for or paying for then the medical response could cease. We feel this would be a big mistake!

We are soliciting your feedback on how you would like the township to proceed. We are asking you to step up and volunteer to be a firefighter and/or EMT. Ultimately the final decision rests with the Township Trustee and Board, but your voice counts! We look forward to seeing you at the upcoming township meetings at the Senior Citizens Building next to the Fire Station. The meeting schedule is posted on their door and on our calendar tab.

In addition to asking for help we strongly believe it is important you know and understand that we write grants and try to fund as many things as we can ourselves.  On top of grants we also use money raised through our fundraisers and green sign sales to give back around $1000 each year to the Unionville School food baskets and around $1000 each year for candy and film for our Halloween event.

A list of our past purchases using money that is NOT from township taxes includes over $633,000.00:

  • 1999: $50,000 toward the purchase of Tanker 14-7, a 1999 Freightliner 
  • 2000: $35,000 toward the purchase of Rescue 14-6, a 1981 GMC 4X4
  • 2001:  $35,000 toward the purchase of Squad 14, a 2001 Dodge Dakota
  • 2001: $7,500 toward wildland firefighting equipment and tools
  • 2004: $126,132 toward the purchase of turnout gear, air packs, and a cascade system
  • 2005: $236,550 toward the purchase of Engine 14-1, a 2006 Freightliner
  • 2006: $134,467 toward the purchase of new radios, tools, gear and additional hoseline
  • 2008: $22,000 toward the purchase of Marine 14, a 2009 Rescue One connector boat
  • 2008: $10,550 toward the pump unit on 14-2A
  • 2010: $6,800 toward the purchase of 2 backup generators for the fire department buildings
  • 2012: $9,586 DNR matching grant toward the purchase of new wildland firefighting gear
  • 2015: $10,165 DNR matching grant for digital radios and wildland gear

Become a Volunteer!

Volunteers Needed!

If you are interested in serving your community and helping out your neighbors, become a volunteer! Experience and certifications are preferred, but are not required.

We are always looking for more help.

Become a Volunteer!

Upcoming Events

All events at the fire station unless otherwise noted.

Monthly Business Meeting

If you're interested in volunteering (or just learning more about the department), join us for our monthly business meeting!

Benton Township Volunteer Fire Department

Copyright © 2016 · All Rights Reserved · Tom Mason