On Tuesday, the Oakley City Council will look to move forward with placing a Utility Users Tax (UUT) on the November Ballot joining the City of Brentwood in seeking an opportunity to increase public safety efforts.
Specifically, if the City Council chooses to place the UUT on the ballot this November, it would open a second fire station in within Oakley city limits (Summer Lakes area) if voters approve the measure.
The City of Brentwood, which is a separate UUT plan for their residents, would open two additional stations within their city limits.
To pass, both measures need 50% + 1 voter approval. Combined between both cities, three additional stations would be added to the system between Brentwood and Oakley where the East Contra Costa Fire Protection District would then be able to operate in a six-fire station model after being forced to close stations.
The ECCFPD had dropped from a total of 8-stations down to 3-stations since 2010. In July, the District was able to open the Knightsen Station given them 4-stations with a joint-funding effort between the cities of Brentwood and Oakley along with the County.
Meanwhile, the latest CityGate report shows the District requires at least 9-fire stations to provide “adequate” fire services. They also said in the report that the ECCFPD is the most under-deployed and administratively understaffed fire department they have seen in over a decade for the size of the communities to be protected.
The City of Oakley is proposing a tax rate of 4.5% UUT with no inflator. A sunset on the tax is included should a property tax reallocation effort generate enough funding to equal the UUT revenue. This generate an estimated $2.6 million per year or roughly $580k per every 1% of UUT.
According to the Staff Report, if approved by voters, the UUT would exempt the schools, and other government entities (such as Ironhouse Sanitary District and Diablo Water District), low-income households from paying.
The UUT includes an additional Tax on electricity, gas, cable TV, water and sewer—it does not include telecommunications.
The cost for the city of Oakley to place this on the ballot would not exceed $20,000 according to the staff report.
If you go:
Tuesday, August 9, 2016
Oakley City Council Chambers
3231 Main Street, Oakley, CA
At this time, its not the City of Oakley’s responsibility to provide fire service. They need to let the fire department do their job and if not replace the people the city has representing them on the fire board.
I am against this tax. I think its double taxation and running my numbers I would pay an additional $280 for a second station. That second station would likely service Bethel Island and Knightsen more than it would Oakley residents being how far east it was.
So thankful the election is in November so we can change out a council who will not accept a tax like this along with storage units and seven elevens
I think this is a small fee to pay for fire service but the business owners who live in town and work in town will pay twice. Seems unfair but Oakley should support it.
This is not a small fee for all. My fee would be an added $400 to $800 per year. It penalizes those with the inability to cut other costs that they want to tax. Because I have a high power bill due to an old home I pay more than my neighbors with new homes. Does that mean I should be the one paying more for the same level of services? I am more than willing to pay a fair share of the cost to maintain a solid fire department, but not be taxed unfairly.
The measure estimates 2.6 million a year with growth coming from wealthy property owners. So, very small growth of wealth coming in the next 20 years. It probably costs $650,000. for each hired fireman per year. So, 4 firemen. Looks like Oakley will be asking for more taxes to support the firehouses and staff somewhere in the future. I guess get revenue to build it and property owners will pay more in additional taxes later to support it?
Property taxes are at pre 08 rates when all stations were open and man’d. Where are these tax dollars going now? No more taxes, period!!!!!
Why would they waste the money it takes to put this on the ballot when they received a Summary of East Contra Costa Fire District Survey Results on July 21, 2016 stating “Ultimately, passing a UUT measure to provide funding for the East Contra Costa Fire Protection District would be challenging in the November 2016 election.”
..Probably why nobody wants more taxes to begin with, they waste it even after being something is unlikely to work. Find a better way to come up with the needed money!
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