The Lincoln County Quorum Court has approved legislation that will change area volunteer fire departments into fire districts so that annual dues may be collected by the Lincoln County Treasurer.

The move followed a law passed by the Arkansas General Assembly which allowed the fire dues to be collected with property tax payments, but the creation of fire districts was a necessary first step.

According to the Lincoln Ledger newspaper, County Attorney Clint Todd said the existing state statute was not well written and is being reviewed. He went on to say that the Quorum Court could set limits not to exceed $50 annually without approval from the Quorum Court. He said estimated dues were to be $35 for property with a residential structure on it and any other property in the same district will not have an additional fee associated with it Businesses will be charged $100, excluding barns, sheds and other structures not used for business.

No one will be charged more than $200 total in annual dues.

The newspaper reported that the fire departments that will now be fire districts are the Gannett Volunteer Fire Department, Cornerville Volunteer Fire Department, Southeast Jefferson County Volunteer Fire Department, Wells Bayou Volunteer Fire Department, Glendale Volunteer Fire Department and the Southeast Lincoln County Volunteer Fire Department.