How to protest your Calfire SRA Fire Fee
A Fringe how-to guide
Note! The Fringe is not an attorney specializing in state thievery! This does not constitute legal advice! The results of filing a protest with the state are unknown! They might send someone around to torch your place, we don’t know! We are only as free as we are brave! If you’re an adult of sound mind, decide for yourself what to do!
All this information comes from these websites:
These are the steps I took to file my petition in protest of the Calfire State Responsibility Area Fire Fee.
Step One: Pay your fee. You probably have less than 30 days to pay it.
As with any bill you pay by check, write the account or other ID number on your check, write the check number on your portion. In the instance of this bill, neither the State of California Department of Forestry and Fire Protection nor the Board of Equalization who is acting as bag man for this deal could manage a “tear here” portion of the bill.
If you want to pay by check (the best way for many reasons) the bill, in tiny print on the bottom, says you must “include a copy with your payment…keep the original for your records.” In short, if you want to pay by check you have to go to extra trouble and expense because the state of California: 1. Is inept; 2. Is cheap; 3. Can make you do it. It saves them time if you pay on line.
This is also a heads-up to the experienced bureaucrat: the state has literally thousands of nit picking bureaucrats working at your expense to make sure they can disqualify as many petitions as possible. You must be meticulous in your documentation if you want to protest.
Make at least 3 copies of your check on your bill (lay the check on the bill and put it on the copier). Mail the check or pay on line.
After you pay your fee and have your copies, you can file the petition.
The Howard Jarvis Taxpayer’s Association is suing the state over this; it’s possible to be part of that or to get your refund you might have to petition against the tax.
You must also file the petition for redetermination within 30 days!
Download the petition from here http://www.firepreventionfee.com/PetitionForm_081012.pdf
You can not send the petition in with your check! That would make it too easy to put the two together! The check goes in the bank and the petition goes somewhere else, maybe the round file, or maybe into a file marked “cranks” or perhaps they are shipped to China to be stamped “rejected” by a teenaged girl. We don’t know and probably can’t imagine, but don’t send the two together.
If your browser has updated plug-ins the pdf should be “live” meaning you can type in it. You can’t save your work unless you download the pdf into an upgraded version of Adobe. If the petition is live for you, the boxes you need to fill in are highlighted. The fields (blanks) will also have prompts.
The prompt for address: put the address as it appears
If the version isn’t live in your browser, print it out and fill it in.
The billing amount, ID number and date are on the front top of the bill. Copy them exactly.
To find the AP or sticker number, read the tiny print in the first paragraph in the body of the text on the front of the bill.
When all the fields are filled in on the top, select your reason or reasons for petitioning for a reassessment. The instructions urge you to give documentation.
Notice that there is an “other” box. Some suggest that is the place to make your protest. For example, you might feel the fee is an illegal tax. Write that in under “other” on the form. What you put is up to you. Sign the form.
Choose a reason and sign the form; your reason must be true to the best of your knowledge.
The California Farm Bureau has provided a letter to go with your petition. Go to the Cal Farm Bureau website above, download the letter, highlight the words, copy and paste into a new document, if you wish, or write your own letter, or just send the petition.
Cal Farm Bureau Letter
The petition states you must send it to the Fire Prevention Fee Service Center; you must actually send it to the three addresses shown on the Farm Bureau letter:
Fire Prevention Petitions, P.O. Box 2254, Suisun City, CA 94585
Board of Forestry and Fire Protection, P.O. Box 944246, Sacramento, CA 94244
Board of Equalization, P.O. Box 942879, Sacramento, CA 94279