What is an Emergency Services District?
An Emergency Services District (“ESD”) is a local political subdivision of the State created by an election(s), that provide fire, rescue, EMS and other emergency services. Emergency Services Districts (ESDs) are authorized by the Texas Constitution, Article 3, Section 48-e, and Chapter 775 of the Texas Health & Safety Code. ESDs may collect a sales and use tax and/or property taxes to support or provide these services. ESDs are governed by a Board of five (5) Commissioners who are either appointed or elected. There are more than 340 emergency services districts operating in Texas across 90 counties. Denton County Emergency Services District No. 1 currently covers sixty-five (65) square miles with a population of around forty-two thousand (42,000). The mission of Denton County Emergency Services District No. 1 is “To serve the citizens of our district with qualified and dedicated professionals and to provide the most advanced fire and emergency medical services in our profession while being conservative with public funds entrusted to the district.”
History of Denton County Emergency Services District No. 1
The Denton County Emergency Services District No. 1 began as Argyle Volunteer Fire District (AVFD) in 1963 and was created by a group of local citizens after a house fire occurred in the community and there were no formal fire mitigation strategies in place. In 2006, citizens voted and approved the passing of the creation of Denton County Emergency Services District No. 1 to provide funding for mitigation strategies. Denton County Emergency Services District No. 1 is governed by a Board of five (5) Commissioners and is primarily funded from ad valorem taxes. The District provides service to the towns of Argyle, Bartonville, Copper Canyon, Corral City/Draper, Lantana, Northlake, as well as surrounding areas of Denton County (i.e., unincorporated areas within the extraterritorial jurisdiction (ETJ) of each of these towns and one Special Utility District). Additionally, the District contracts with the City of Denton and maintains mutual and automatic aid agreements with Flower Mound Fire Department, Roanoke Fire Department, and Justin Community Volunteer Fire Department. There are currently three (3) fire stations within the District, Station 511 located at 511 Gibbons Rd S Argyle, TX, Station 513 located at 865 Copper Canyon Rd Copper Canyon, TX and Station 514 located at 6805 Cleveland Gibbs Rd Northlake, TX.
Growth of Denton County Emergency Services District No. 1
The communities within the District have experienced a large growth since 2018 and are projected to continue to grow more in the next ten years. In 2021, the District experienced its largest call volume to date with three thousand one hundred and seventy eight (3,178) total calls, which was a twenty eight (28) percent increase over 2020. The District currently includes four (4) school districts, four (4) public water systems, three (3) urgent care clinics opening in the District within the year, gas wells and associated petroleum/natural gas pipelines, transportation (three airports, major bridges, highways, and rail transportation), large commercial facilities, industrial parks, and several retail centers.
What is an annexation election?
Under section 775.051 of the Texas Health and Safety Code, an ESD may expand their territory if a petition is gathered and signed by at least 50 qualified voters who own taxable real property in an ESD and if the ESD Board finds that it would be feasible and would benefit the community. For the area to be annexed into an ESD, it must appear on an election ballot and pass by a majority of voters.
Annexation into Denton County Emergency Services District No. 1
A petition was gathered and signed by over 100 qualified voters in the area known as Lantana and described as Denton County Fresh Water Supply District No. 6 and 7. The petition was submitted to the ESD that would add all portions of the area known as Latana and described as Denton County Fresh Water Supply District No. 6 and 7. Currently, that area is serviced on a contract basis by the ESD. On August 17, 2023, Denton County Emergency Services District No. 1 found that the annexation (expansion) petition met all the requirements under the Texas Health and Safety Code and that the expansion of the District was feasible and would benefit the community. By expanding into the area known as Lantana, this would help secure funds to service the area known as Latana. Denton County Emergency Services District No. 1 Board of Commissioners has called for an annexation proposition to be placed on the ballot for the November 7, 2023 Election. If approved by a majority of voters, this proposition would authorize Denton County Emergency Services District No. 1 to add all portions of the area known as Lantana and described as Denton County Fresh Water Supply District No. 6 and 7 and secure funding for these additional areas
What will the ballot look like?
The November 7, 2023 ballot for those in the above proposed territory will ask the residents to vote for or against the expansion of Denton County Emergency No. 1. The ballot will read as follows:
“Adding all portions of the area known as Lantana and described as Denton County Fresh Water Supply District No. 6 and 7 which lie within the boundaries of Denton County, Texas and which are not currently included in Denton County Emergency Services District No. 1 to the Denton County Emergency Services District No. 1.”
What voter precincts can vote on this Proposition?
Insert voter registration precincts.
Where do I vote and when?
Early voting will begin October 23, 2023 through November 4, 2023 and Election Day will be November 7, 2023.
Early Voting will be conducted at Station 511 from 9:00am – 6:00pm:
511 Gibbons S.
Argyle, TX 76226
Election Day will be conducted from 7:00am – 7:00pm at the following locations:
511 Gibbons S.
Argyle, TX 76226
865 Copper Canyon Rd
Argyle, TX 76226
6801 Cleveland Gibbs Rd
Argyle, TX 76226
How will this affect my property taxes?
An ESD is funded by a property tax pursuant to the Texas Constitution. The 2023 Tax Rate for Denton County Emergency Services District No. 1 is $0.080283/$100. If the annexation proposition passes by a majority vote, then the residents will pay an ad valorem tax rate of $0.080283/$100. The ad valorem tax rate is evaluated and reviewed every year moving forward and can go up or down as needed to properly fund the District and any debt service but can never exceed the authorized cap of $0.10/$100. Denton County Emergency Services District No. 1 is funded primarily by a property tax.
How will the Property Taxes be used?
If the annexation proposition passes by a majority vote, property taxes collected will be used to fund personnel for fire services, training, purchase of apparatus and equipment for firefighters, repair, update or replace any apparatus needed, keep equipment up to standard and the purchase of land to provide services throughout the District.
What happens if the annexation of Denton County ESD No. 1 does not pass?
If voters do not approve the annexation proposition on the November 7, 2023 ballot, the area known as Lantana will be serviced through a contract basis by the ESD. However, the Board will have to review and revise funding and response times to those areas that reside outside the current District boundaries.
See results here: https://results.enr.clarityelections.com/TX/Denton/119013/web.317647/#/summary
For information on Election Rosters, including ballot by mail, early voting and election day please visit https://www.votedenton.gov/early-voting-roster/