Levy Questions

Griffin Fire Department Levy Lid Lift Information and Facts

Frequently Asked Questions

What is on my August Primary Election Ballot?

The Griffin Fire Department is placing a multi-year levy lid lift proposition on the August 3, 2021 primary election ballot. This proposition restores the Districts regular property tax levy rate from $1.06 for maintenance and operations back to $1.50 per $1,000 of assessed property value.

Have voters approved this before?

Yes, the last time the department pursued a levy lid lift was in 2005 and it was approved by the voters. Since then the levy tax collection rate has fallen to $1.06 per $1,000 of assessed property valuation.                                                                                  

Can the Fire Levy ever go above $1.50 per $1,000?

No. By state law, the fire levy cannot exceed $1.50 per $1,000.                                                      

How much will the lid lift cost?

The $0.44-cent lid lift would cost the owner of a $400,000 home $176 in the first year of collection. This equates to $14.66 per month.

What does the lid lift pay for?

The fire levy pays for daily operations, such as emergency personnel, equipment, apparatus, facilities, repairs and maintenance. It supports both career and volunteer firefighters that provide fire and emergency services 24 hours a day. The timing of this levy lid lift request is directly connected with an expiring FEMA grant that has supported two (2) career firefighters over the past three (3) years. This grant expires at the end of 2021 and we will no longer receive federal funding for these firefighter positions. Moreover, our tax collection rate since our last voter approved measure has steadily decreased resulting in an imbalance of expenditure and revenues. With this levy we’ll be able to maintain the current staffing level for emergency response while maintaining a sustainable budget.

Why is my fire district asking for a lid lift?

The Griffin Fire Department funds all of its daily operations and capital needs through this regular operating levy for fire and emergency services. This means the District pays for apparatus, equipment, and all personnel (career & Volunteer) through its operating budget. With the increase of assessed value and the tax collection limit capped at 1% of the previous years’ tax collection, the tax collection rate steadily decreases. Since our last levy lid lift, the tax collection rate has fallen to $1.06 per $1,000 of assessed property value. This creates an imbalance in costs for services versus sustained tax revenue for the fire district.                                                                                                                                                                                                      

Does the fire district get more taxes because of increasing property value?

The fire district is limited to a tax limiter per year by state law regardless of how much a home appreciates in value. This levy lid lift has a 6% limiter for each year of the levy. In other words, the district can only collect a maximum of 6% above the previous year’s collection rate regardless of how much your home increases in value.