City News Blog


The latest happenings in your city government.

Flood Insurance Rate Maps are changing and Southwest Florida Management District is coordinating these map changes for Polk County. A number of public meetings have been scheduled for information on these changes and the potential impacts to your insurance premiums in Polk County.

May 12, 2014 @ 4PM in Bartow at the Polk Street Community Center (1255 Polk St, Bartow, FL 33830)

May 13, 2014 @ 4PM in Lakeland at the Magnolia Building (698 E Orange St, Lakeland, FL 33801)

May 14, 2014 @ 4PM in WInter Haven at the Chain O'Lakes Complex Pool Room South Entrance (210 Cypress Gardens Bl, Winter Haven, FL 33830)

If interested in inquiring about the map changes specific to your property, you may contact Mahen Pete, P.E., in Public Works at 863-834-8442 or via email

The Lakeland Fire Department (LFD) is proud to announce that its Insurance Service Office (ISO) Public Protection Classification score has improved by an entire rating level from its previous score of 3, to a level 2. This increase may have significant influence in reducing insurance rates for Lakeland residents and businesses considering it plays a big role in how insurance companies - including the largest in the nation - figure rates and decision making in regards to who they underwrite.


The score, based on a scale from 1 to 10, with 1 representing the highest level of fire suppression standards and 10 indicating an unacceptable level of fire suppression, is produced by ISO through an extensive evaluation process. The department’s services, response times, equipment, personnel, training efforts, community outreach, and more were evaluated to develop a final score. That score in turn provides both insurers and the fire department a comprehensive measure to rate the quality of the fire protection they provide. In Lakeland’s case, its new PPC score of 2 indicates a very high level of fire protection.


“The men and women of the Lakeland Fire Department worked very hard to achieve this momentous goal. This is the first time in the history of the department, in the ISO era, that we have accomplished such a high level of public protection classification that can have very real and positive outcomes for the citizens of Lakeland.” said Training Chief John Almskog, who was instrumental in coordinating the review.


ISO auditors visited in July of 2013, during which Lakeland’s Fire Department, Water Department, and Police Communications Center were evaluated to come up with the final determination. Of the 682 ISO rated communities in Florida, only 40 have a level 2 classification placing Lakeland in the top 7th percentile. The LFD’s score of 2 was very strong, only 2 percentage points below a score of 1. The score is anticipated to become effective on March 1, 2014.