Information: Fire Fee Assessment
Notices of the city’s proposed fire assessment fee have been mailed to all who own property in the City of St. Augustine, both residential and commercial
Please note that this notice is not a bill for the fee. If the City Commission approves the new rates, the fee will be included in each property owner’s Property Tax bill in November.
The Commission set the proposed fee during its July 25 meeting and will consider the fee for adoption during its regular meeting on Monday, August 22, starting at 5:00pm.
The purpose of the fee is to support the services of the fire department in way more equitable that simply including in property taxes as there are many tax exempt properties that depend on those same fire services and taxed properties. With the fire assessment fee, every property contributed to ensure fire safety.
What area of property is assessed
The building space used for the calculation of the fee was derived from the St. Johns County Property Appraiser’s records and should include all areas that is enclosed or sheltered, not the gross area as has been reflected on some of the mailed notices.
For instance, the gross area will include a patio or a pool deck for an outdoor pool, but those spaces will not be included in the the assessed area for the fire fee. Likewise, even though a porch or garage is not heated/air-conditioned, it will also be included in the assessed area.
A simple way to know the area that will be included when figuring the fire assessment fee is to include areas covered by a roof or with partial or full walls.
For residential property owners, the proposed new rate is a decrease from the current rate, from $0.06 per square foot of building space to $0.041 per square foot of building space. For a 2,000 square foot property, the proposed fee will be a decrease from $120 per year to $82 per year.
For non-residential property, the proposed rate represents an increase from $0.06 per square foot of building space to $0.0747 per square foot of building space. For a 2,000 square foot property, the proposed fee will be an increase from $120 per year to $149.40 per year.
Prior to consideration of the fee on Monday, August 22, the City Commission will hold a public hearing so property owners may express their views on the proposed fee. That meeting, held in The Alcazar Room, City Hall, 75 King St., starts at 5:00pm and will be available for live or on-demand viewing at www.CityStAugTV.com.
If you have any questions about the property, the square footage, or the rate on your notice, please contact the City of St. Augustine at 904.825.1030 or 904.209.4254.