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A family in a rural outskirts of a town in Tennessee is fuming after firefighters allowed their family home to burn down after the family opted out of an additional $75.00 service charged to rural residents in the county.

According to a report done by MSNBC, Gene Cranick of Obion County and his family lost all of their possessions in the Sept. 29 fire, along with three dogs and a cat because the family refused to pay an additional “fire protection” fee.

The $75.00 fee is charged annually and is an elected charge that rural residents elect to pay in addition to their state taxes.

Cranick states that after calling and being ignored by 911 more than three times, Firefighters finally responded to the call—just to watch it burn.

Cranick then states that firefighters only started to put out the fire once the fire spread to a neighbor’s yard that did pay the fee.

“They could have been saved if they had put water on it, but they didn’t do it,” Cranick told MSNBC.

The mayor of the city states that although it seemed unfair, the “fire protection” tax is explained to all rural county residents and is likened to auto insurance.

“If an auto owner allowed their insurance to lapse, they would not expect the insurance company to pay for an unprotected vehicle that was wrecked,” Mayor David Crocker said. “If 911 responded on a per call basis, there would be no incentive for county residents to pay the fee.”

SMH, if that’s the way you get treated in Obion County, why even pay taxes at all?

Check out the news coverage from Keith Olbermann below.

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