Attendees asked questions of Goolsby and Calvert for nearly 45 minutes, many of them focusing on what police and fire protection Gardendale would provide, especially since the Mt. Olive Fire and Rescue District’s board of trustees has come out against annexation, according to Goolsby and Calvert.
Calvert and Goolsby said they propose that Gardendale contract with the district to continue to provide fire protection, with the city paying about $350,000 a year in lieu of the fire dues the Mt. Olive residents currently pay. In most cases, those dues equal an ad valorem tax rate of 10 mills — the same as the new property tax being assessed to Gardendale residents to fund the new school system.