BY DONNA WESTFALL
It is a fee or is it a tax? The State of California has begun mailing bills to rural property owners for fire prevention. Howard Jarvis Taxpayer’s Association (HJTA) believes this fee imposed by politicians is really an illegal tax under Proposition 13. They are prepared to go to court over it.
The $150 annual fee was approved last July by state lawmakers, and will affect anyone with a habitable property in the 31 million acres of State Responsibility Area in California. It will not affect Crescent City residents, only those in the county who are already burdened by so many taxes and fees.
In the meantime, the local Del Norte County Republican Women’s group addressed the issue at their luncheon Thursday, September 6, 2012 held at Light House Inn. Callie Martin got up and said that you should pay this tax, but to write “PROTEST,” so you may later qualify for a refund.
The Republican group will help out any homeowner’s by providing forms which can be picked up at their headquarters located on the corner of 3rd and “I” streets. Learn how to fill out the forms so that you will be eligible for a refund should HJTA be successful through the courts. Follow the directions. Pay the bill, pay it on time, but send each of the forms (three) to the appropriate places. Forms can also be downloaded off HJTA’s website.