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The Durango Fire Protection District is funded by a 5.7 mill levy from property tax and a contract with the City of Durango. The District is governed by a seven-member board of directors, elected at large. The governing board is responsible for, among other things, adopting the budget, appointing committees, and hiring the district fire chief. The fire chief is responsible for carrying out the policies of the board of directors, for overseeing the day-to-day operations of the District.

The mission of the District is to provide an all risk service, consisting of; fire suppression of buildings, wildland and vehicle, emergency medical services/ambulance service including patient transport, rescue (water, rope, confined space, vehicle), fire prevention, fire code enforcement, public education, hazardous material response, to a population of 40,000 in approximately 325 square miles of southwestern Colorado. Durango Fire & Rescue is a combination department with a total of 180 employees and members. The department maintains 16 stations, 4 of which are staffed by paid fire fighters and medics, while the remaining 12 stations are crewed by our dedicated volunteers.

The department was created by the combining of 3 fire departments and a hospital based ambulance service. Animas Fire Protection District, Hermosa Cliff Fire Protection District , Durango Fire Department, and Mercy Ambulance consolidated January 1st, 2002, thereby creating The Durango Fire & Rescue Authority. In January of 2014 all operations are now being run by the Durango Fire Protection District. All of the prior districts and authority have been dissolved by voter approval.