Nielsen Announces Effort To Repeal Fire Tax In A Press Conference

Thursday, March 15, 2012

Assemblyman Jim Nielsen (R-Gerber) joined other Republican colleagues today in the State Capitol to introduce legislation he has co-authored to stop a tax increase on rural property owners.  Assembly Bill (AB) 1506 would reverse the Governor's and Democrats' effort to raise $84 million in taxes on residents living in rural areas.

"This measure was unjustly introduced and questionably passed in last year's budget in the dark of the night with no committee hearings or details on the measure," said Nielsen. "It is now time to repeal this bad and burdensome policy, and AB 1506 will do just that."

The current SRA (State Responsibility Area) fee, as it stands, institutes a flat $150 tax to every owner of a habitable structure in the SRA while allowing for a $35 credit if the structure is located within a local fire protection agency.  This proposed fee shall be administered by the Department of Forestry and Fire Protection and collected by the Board of Equalization (BOE).  Additionally, in order to administer this new tax the Governor and the BOE want to create 56 new bureaucrats at cost of $6.5 million. 

"It is egregious that the State of California can justify spending millions of dollars in another budget deficit year in an attempt to collect an illegal tax from its rural citizens," said Nielsen. "I will work tirelessly together with my colleagues and taxpayers' organization to make sure that this fee is stopped and that California's budget woes are not balanced on the backs of its rural residents."