Gov. Brown seeks to expand, revamp fire fee

The fight over firefighting fees is again heating up in the Legislature.

Gov. Jerry Brown wants to revamp and expand a fire fee enacted this summer on rural homeowners, proposing to raise the levy on homes, as well as to tack on a new per-acre fee for land in fire-prone backcountry areas.

The original fire fee, enacted in this summer’s state budget, was to be $150 per structure, of which there are more than 700,000, in fire zones that state firefighters protect.

But a state board capped the fee at only $90 and added rebates for owners in certain areas, wiping away much of the $50 million in budget savings the administration had counted on.

Now, last-minute legislation supported by Brown and unveiled Friday would “supersede that,” said Department of Finance  spokesman H.D. Palmer. L.A. TIMES

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