SOME RESIDENTS TO GET $150 BILLS FOR STATE FIRE PROTECTION

SOME RESIDENTS TO GET $150 BILLS FOR STATE FIRE PROTECTION

Starting this month, rural residents all over California, including many in our Morongo Basin, will start receiving invoices for $150 per year for Cal Fire services. Residents living within California’s “state responsibility area” are required to pay the fee within 30 days of receiving the bill or face steep penalties and interest, according to the State Board of Equalization. The fee was promoted as a way to ensure that rural residents are paying their share of wildfire prevention costs amid rising costs. Cal Fire says the tax will provide a stable source of funding for a portion of the agency’s budget spent on fire prevention activities, including brush clearance and defensible space inspections. The bills, which will be sent out starting mid-August in alphabetical order by county, will be for the fiscal year 2011-12. In March 2013, the BOE will begin billing for the 2012-13 fiscal year. In this area, many residents of the Northern Yucca Valley area, Pioneertown, Morongo Valley and parts of Joshua Tree will be billed. To find out if you reside in the area affected by the new fee, visit their website at www.bof.fire.ca.gov/sra_viewer/.

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