I've often wondered how much the tax burden would increase without FF and EMT volunteers. In NJ, almost all but the most urban communities are still served by vollies. They are an asset to the community. I was a volunteer EMT for over 10 years. Thousands of calls for service, and the community did not get charged a dime, other than donations they voluntarily made. Fortunately, most training for FF's and EMT's is still affordable that it can be picked up by the respective department. Once the training requirements go up, then you need to look at where the money is going to come from.