The fire fee is a bad tax, not just because of the unnecessary burden it places on taxpayers, but because it is horribly inefficient to collect. From the beginning, the process of collecting the Fire Prevention Fee has been lengthy and expensive, proving it is a poor method for funding CAL-FIRE’s fire prevention efforts.
Unfortunately, this month the third round of Fire Prevention Fee bills began going out with the new rate of $152.33 (or $117.33 for the 97% who live in a local fire protection district). This set of bills will be for the 2013-14 fiscal year. Approximately 10,000 bills will be sent each day in alphabetical order by county. This marks the first time the BOE has sent two billings in the same fiscal year.
Remember, in order to be eligible for a refund under the lawsuit against the fire fee, property owners must protest every billing by timely filing a new Petition for Redetermination.
You can find a copy of the billing schedule at calfirefee.com/billing-schedule.