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China Grove Is Still Served By Volunteer Fire Department — But That May Change

This is an emergency scene including both a fire engine and an ambulance.
katifcam/Getty Images/iStockphoto
This is an emergency scene including both a fire engine and an ambulance.

A public meeting will be held at 6:30 p.m. Thursday at China Grove City Hall for the proposed creation of Emergency Services District 9 to offer fire and EMS protection for the area.

The district would serve the city of China Grove and the surrounding area. The chief of the China Grove Volunteer Fire Department, Mike Winfield, told Bexar County Commissioners this week it's time for the area to be served by around-the-clock, professionally-paid first responders.

County Commissioner Tommy Calvert agreed with the fire chief. He said a development of 1,400 homes, as well as large HEB and Amazon facilities, are part of the reason the district is needed.

"All of that housing and all of that growth necessitates emergency services keeping up, so I'm very proud to have ushered in a new era with you," he said.

It's one of the last parts of the county still served by a volunteer fire department.

Such departments started disappearing in 2004 as major growth creeped into unincorporated areas and emergency services districts replaced them.

This would be the 12th and final district of its kind in Bexar County. If county commissioners set an election on the issue at their Aug. 19 meeting, voters have the final say on the district at the polls in November.

Emergency services districts cannot impose a property tax of more than 10 cents per $100 valuation to support their operations.

More than 100 residents petitioned the county to consider its creation, but there is some opposition, too.

China Grove has a population of more than 1,300 people, which is an increase of 12% over the last decade.

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