Code Section

* California Constitution - CONS


ARTICLE XIII A [TAX LIMITATION] [SECTION 1 - SEC. 7]
  ( Article 13A added June 6, 1978, by Prop. 13. Initiative measure. )

  
SEC. 2.2.  

(a) Protection of Fire Services, Emergency Response, and County Services. It is the intent of the Legislature in proposing, and the people in adopting, this section and Section 2.3 to do both of the following:

(1) Dedicate revenue for fire protection and emergency response, address inequities in underfunded fire districts, ensure all communities are protected from wildfires, and safeguard the lives of millions of Californians.

(2) Protect county revenues and other vital local services.

(b) (1) The California Fire Response Fund is hereby created within the State Treasury.

(2) The County Revenue Protection Fund is hereby created within the State Treasury. Moneys in the County Revenue Protection Fund are continuously appropriated, without regard to fiscal year, for the purpose of reimbursing eligible local agencies that incur a negative gain, and paying the administrative costs of the California Department of Tax and Fee Administration, in accordance with Section 2.3. Moneys in the fund shall only be expended as provided in Section 2.3.

(c) For purposes of the calculations required by Section 8 of Article XVI, moneys in the California Fire Response Fund and the County Revenue Protection Fund shall be deemed to be General Fund revenues which may be appropriated pursuant to Article XIII B.

(d) The Director of Finance shall do the following, as applicable:

(1) On or before September 1, 2022, and on or before each subsequent September 1 through September 1, 2027, calculate the additional revenues and savings that accrued to the state from the implementation of Section 2.1, including, but not limited to, any increase in state income tax revenues and net savings to the state arising from any reduction in the state’s funding obligation under Section 8 of Article XVI, during the immediately preceding fiscal year ending on June 30. In making the calculation required by this paragraph, the Director of Finance shall use actual data or best available estimates where actual data is not available. The calculation shall be final and shall not be adjusted for any subsequent changes in the underlying data. The Director of Finance shall certify the results of the calculation to the Legislature and the Controller no later than September 1 of each year.

(2) On or before September 1, 2028, and each subsequent September 1 thereafter, calculate the additional revenues and savings that accrued to the state from the implementation of Section 2.1, including, but not limited to, any increase in state income tax revenues and net savings to the state arising from any reduction in the state’s funding obligation under Section 8 of Article XVI during the immediately preceding fiscal year ending on June 30 by multiplying the amount from the immediately preceding fiscal year ending on June 30 by the rate of increase in property tax revenues allocated to local agencies in that fiscal year. In making the calculation required by this paragraph, the Director of Finance shall use actual data or best available estimates where actual data is not available. The calculation shall be final and shall not be adjusted for any subsequent changes in the underlying data. The Director of Finance shall certify the results of the calculation to the Legislature and the Controller no later than September 1 of each fiscal year.

(e) No later than September 15, 2022, and each subsequent September 15 thereafter, the Controller shall do both of the following:

(1) Transfer from the General Fund to the California Fire Response Fund an amount equal to 75 percent of the amount calculated by the Director of Finance pursuant to subdivision (d) for the applicable year.

(2) Transfer from the General Fund to the County Revenue Protection Fund an amount equal to 15 percent of the amount calculated by the Director of Finance pursuant to subdivision (d) for the applicable year. Moneys transferred to the County Revenue Protection Fund pursuant to this paragraph shall be used to reimburse eligible local agencies with a negative gain, as provided in Section 2.3.

(f) Moneys in the California Fire Response Fund shall be appropriated by the Legislature in each fiscal year exclusively for the purposes of this section and, except as otherwise provided in subdivision (g), shall not be appropriated for any other purpose. Moneys in the California Fire Response Fund may be used upon appropriation without regard to fiscal year and shall be used to expand fire suppression staffing, as set forth in paragraphs (1) to (4), inclusive, and not to supplant existing state or local funds utilized for those purposes.

(1) Twenty percent of the moneys in the California Fire Response Fund shall be appropriated to the Department of Forestry and Fire Protection to fund fire suppression staffing.

(2) Eighty percent of the moneys in the California Fire Response Fund shall be deposited in the Special District Fire Response Fund, which is hereby created as a subaccount within the California Fire Response Fund, and appropriated to special districts that provide fire protection services in accordance with the following criteria:

(A) Fifty percent of the amount described in this paragraph shall be used to fund fire suppression staffing in underfunded special districts that provide fire protection services, were formed after July 1, 1978, and employ full-time or full-time-equivalent station-based personnel who are immediately available to comprise at least 50 percent of an initial full alarm assignment.

(B) Twenty-five percent of the amount described in this paragraph shall be used to fund fire suppression staffing in special districts that provide fire protection services, were formed before July 1, 1978, are underfunded due to a disproportionately low share of property tax revenue and an increase in service level demands since July 1, 1978, and employ full-time or full-time-equivalent station-based personnel who are immediately available to comprise at least 50 percent of an initial full alarm assignment.

(C) Twenty-five percent of the amount described in this paragraph shall be used to fund fire suppression staffing in underfunded special districts that provide fire protection services and employ full-time or full-time-equivalent station-based personnel who are immediately available to comprise at least 30 percent but less than 50 percent of an initial full alarm assignment.

(3) In determining whether a special district that provides fire protection services is underfunded for purposes of paragraph (2), the Legislature shall take into account the following factors, in order of priority:

(A) The degree to which the special district’s property tax revenue is insufficient to sustain adequate fire suppression, as measured against the population density, size of the service area, and number of taxpayers within the boundaries of the special district.

(B) Whether the special district, upon formation, received a property tax allocation in accordance with Chapter 282 of the Statutes of 1979.

(C) Geographic diversity.

(4) The allocation of moneys to a special district that qualifies pursuant to paragraph (2) shall be in the form of grants, with a term of not less than 10 years, in order to ensure that the special district can engage in responsible budgeting and sustain adequate fire suppression services over the long term.

(g) Notwithstanding subdivision (f), if in any fiscal year after the first fiscal year for which moneys are transferred from the General Fund to the California Fire Response Fund pursuant to this section the amount transferred exceeds the amount transferred in the previous fiscal year by more than 10 percent, the Controller shall not transfer the amount in excess of that 10 percent, which shall be available for appropriation from the General Fund for any purpose.

(Sec. 2.2 added Nov. 3, 2020, by Prop. 19. Res.Ch. 31, 2020. Effective December 16, 2020.)