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Fire Measure 2024

Belvedere's Fire Measure renewal will be on the March 2024 ballot. The election takes place on Tuesday, March 5, 2024. Find out more about the election and how to vote here.

Background

The Belvedere Fire Measure renewal does not increase taxes. It simply allows the City to continue spending the Fire Tax revenues it already receives.

This legacy technical requirement stems from the fact that Belvedere’s Fire Tax was not introduced until 1980, one year after the State of California placed a limit on local government spending of tax proceeds at 1978-79 levels with indexation.

Spending above this "Gann Limit" must be approved by a simple majority vote of the electorate at least every four years. The current Belvedere Fire Measure expires on June 30, 2024.

This is the eleventh four-yearly renewal of the Fire Measure since 1984. It has received 76-96% support over the past ten renewals.

Fire Measure FAQs

In 1980, Belvedere dissolved its all-volunteer fire department and began contracting with Tiburon Fire Protection District for professional fire protection and emergency medical services. In the same year, Belvedere voters approved a parcel tax – the Fire Tax – to cover the cost of this new service. The Fire Tax adjusts modestly each year to account for changes in population and cost of living. The tax is collected as part of regular property taxes and is 100% directed to pay for fire protection and emergency medical services in Belvedere.

No. The Fire Measure does not change or affect Belvedere’s Fire Tax.

In 1979, California voters approved Proposition 4, which limits the growth in state and local government spending financed from tax revenue to 1978-1979 levels with modest annual adjustments. Spending of tax proceeds above this “Gann Limit” must be approved by a simple majority vote of the electorate at least every four years. Since the Fire Tax was not in place when Belvedere’s Gann Limit was established, a vote to increase the ceiling is necessary to allow these proceeds to be spent.

If a simple majority of Belvedere voters do not support the Fire Measure, the City cannot spend the Fire Tax revenue it collects – beginning in FY 2024-25. Fire Tax receipts account for $1.1 million of the current-year $10.3 million City budget ($8.1 million budget net of TFPD contract costs). In such an event, the City would potentially no longer be able to fund core services such as local police and capital improvements.

If, within two years, the City cannot successfully pass a Fire Measure, it is required by law to remit unspent Fire Tax receipts back to taxpayers.

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