Jerome City To Fire Victim…”Ummm, Nevermind!”
JEROME (KTVB) – Officials in Jerome say it was all a mistake after the fire department sent a nearly $100,000 bill to the owner of a downtown apartment building destroyed in a massive fire last month. The Jerome Fire Department billed Sylvia Moore for 67 hours of firefighting costs after several buildings were damaged in the April 30th fire. That bill came to nearly $100,000. Moore said she received a phone call yesterday from the city's attorney who said she should not have been billed for the firefighting costs. Moore is still waiting to get a written confirmation. The city press release sent later yesterday stated : "The invoice sent to Sylvia Moore was sent in error. No recovery costs will be sought against Ms. Moore for the fire occurring upon her property. The City of Jerome deeply regrets this error." Investigators determined that a tenant left a hot glue gun on a plastic chair. The cause of the fire was determined to be accidental. On Wednesday, Fire Chief Jack Krill told Idaho’s News Channel Seven that Moore’s insurance company should pay for fighting the largest fire in the city’s history. He said this was an extraordinary fire and the city wanted to recover taxpayer money the best it could. The three-page bill included paying firefighters, police, equipment cost and food during their response which lasted several days. The question circulating among residents and city officials alike was how a fire department paid with taxes can also bill for fighting a fire within an area it is assigned to protect. The city had given Moore until June 21st to pay up, or face a 20 percent penalty.