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First Responder Fee

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Firefighters train to respond to medical emergencies affecting patients of all ages. 

The El Dorado County Fire Protection District Board of Directors unanimously approved a First Responder Fee at the July 21, 2022 board meeting. You can find a link to the meeting information here. Here is the ordinance that was adopted:

2022-01 First Responder Fee Ordinance - Approved.pdf

To assist with developing this new First Responder Fee, the District engaged DTA to develop a cost of services (or use fee) analysis (the "Analysis"). DTA has prepared this Analysis using the District's operating budget, four (4) years of call data, and operational information provided by staff to determine the fee level that best suits the District's needs in recovering their expenditures related to providing these services. You can view the First Responder Fee Analysis here: 

El Dorado County First Responder Fee Report (Final Distributed 6.20.22).pdf

 

Frequently Asked Questions:

What is a First Responder Fee?

First Responder Fees are cost recovery to support increasing Emergency Medical Services (EMS) cost for advanced EMS services by first responders, not covered by property taxes.  They are permitted under Section 13916 of the California Health & Safety Code.

Are other fire districts charging the same or similar fees?

Yes.  The implementation and collection of First Responder Fees has become an industry standard to fund the enhanced paramedic level of service provided by fire district resources and their staffing.

Health and Safety Code Section 13916, what does it say?

(a) A district board may charge a fee to cover the cost of any service which the district provides or the cost of enforcing any regulation for which the fee is charged.  No fee shall exceed the costs reasonably borne by the district in providing the service or enforcing the regulation for which the fee is charged.  A district board shall not charge a fee on new construction or development for the construction of public improvements or facilities or the acquisition of equipment.

Do my taxes cover this service?

Local fire agencies have far expanded their original duty of fighting fires and responding to emergencies. Originally, only basic medical services were provided (splints, CPR, etc.). Today, more than 80% of all calls the fire district responds to are for advanced life support, including intubation and the use of defibrillators. The challenge for fire districts is to ensure revenues match the increasing expenses for providing this essential public service. This change in balance from traditional fire suppression to medical services has shifted the rationale for financing fire district operations toward a combination of general fund revenues and user fees, instead of solely from general fund revenues. This combination will create a more sustainable funding source by providing revenues beyond property tax assessments.

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