Property tax revenues provide almost all funding for TVF&R. We receive property taxes through a ($1.52/$1,000 of assessed value) permanent tax rate, a local option levy that funds firefighters and equipment, and a general obligation bond tax levy that pays for capital construction projects approved by voters in 2006. The District’s permanent tax rate was set in 1997 as part of the implementation of a statewide constitutional tax measure.
Our voters have supported additional funding for enhanced firefighter staffing and supporting equipment through local option levies, which expire in five years. District voters supported an enhanced replacement levy (Measure 34-211) in May 2014. This five-year levy allows TVF&R to retain 86 firefighter medics to help provide fast, safe, and effective emergency response. The levy will also purchase land for new stations and apparatus. The rate of 45 cents per $1,000 of assessed valuation took effect in July 2015.
Station construction, land for fire stations, and command operating centers including emergency operating components, emergency response vehicles, and other long-term capital investments such as seismic improvements for faster response after an earthquake, have been funded through a series of bond sales after a 2006 voter approval of the sale of up to a total of $77.5 million dollars of general obligation bonds. The current tax rate for the debt under a separate debt levy totals 9.73 cents per $1,000 of assessed valuation of property.
The District has received national awards from the Government Finance Officers Association (GFOA) consecutively since 1987 for its audited financial reports and since 1987-88 for its budget documents. The District submits its bonds for credit rating by Moody’s Investor Service, and currently holds the highest rating attainable, Aaa.