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Temecula Hit By Increased Fire Services Costs

According to the new cost allocation plan, total shared administrative and support costs are expected to come to $36.5 million in 2012-13. That's a 12 percent jump from the $32.5 million in 2011-12.

Riverside County supervisors today approved a proposal to increase administrative and support charges paid by most local cities for fire services.

Without comment, the Board of Supervisors unanimously approved the cost allocation plan that contains higher total expenses for 20 cities and the county in the current fiscal year. The costs include outlays to maintain support staff who oversee payroll and purchase equipment, as well as outlays for dispatch services, fleet repairs, the hazardous materials unit and the reserve firefighter program.

Cities are billed directly for fire protection services and for some additional expenses, including electricity to power fire stations and keep them in working order. However, the leftover costs are spread among municipalities and the county.

The county contracts with the California Department of Forestry for fire protection services, and most of the incorporated cities within the county, in turn, contract with the county.

According to the new cost allocation plan, total shared administrative and support costs are expected to come to $36.5 million in 2012-13. That's a 12 percent jump from the $32.5 million in 2011-12.

The county will continue to pay the largest sum -- $16.8 million, up from $14.8 million the year before -- under the plan. Its share includes costs incurred servicing the city of Jurupa Valley, which has not been able to meet its obligations because of state budget cuts.

The five cities with the highest cost burdens are:

-- Moreno Valley, $2.79 million, up 12 percent;

-- Palm Desert, $1.92 million, up 6 percent;

-- Temecula, $1.77 million, up 5 percent;

-- Indio, $1.76 million, up 6 percent; and

-- Menifee, $1.53 million, up 9 percent.

According to county fire department documents, the city of Beaumont's costs are going down 3 percent, and the Rubidoux Community Services District's costs are falling by 10 percent.

The cost allocation plan is the product of a committee composed of staff from Cal Fire, the county, the cities of Indian Wells, Moreno Valley, Palm Desert, Rancho Mirage and Temecula, along with representatives from Rubidoux.

The plan will be retroactive to July 1.

This fiscal year represents the first time since 2007-08 that total pooled costs have risen, according to documents. Actual costs will be recalculated in the fourth quarter of the current fiscal year.

Brenda October 04, 2012 at 08:06 PM
A 12% raise the first time since 07/08 tax year. That is not bad considering how everything in the US has went up so drastically. Heck groceries alone unless you just eat lettuce is 300 for one cart and that is without steaks. That 12% is spread out over the 20 Cities so its not as bad as it sounds. I do not believe its fair for any reason, that Beaumont or Rubidoux should be falling and Jurupa none. Even staying the same would have helped even it out better amongst the other Cities. I also wonder how they set the percentages for each Cities hike? And why Temecula and Murrieta would be high percentages, but less in Sq. area. Temecula and Murrita pay out that much more costs? For such smaller Cities they need to reduce some expenses if that is the case even though we do have more people per square mile cause we are crammed together. :) Still its not bad in General, and those costs will still probably barely be met with the 12% hike. Its really not bad other then those few questions I have, especially due to 07/08 being the last year it was raised.
Rob Godinho October 04, 2012 at 08:19 PM
Brenda, you mean Menifee. Murrieta has their own fire department. Just FYI.
Brenda October 04, 2012 at 08:29 PM
Derrr Typo, Sorry. From the time I read the list to my post I typed the wrong one. MENIFEE!!! LoL, thanks Rob
casey March 01, 2013 at 10:27 PM
@ rob, they will be paying the county in a few years when there engines say " Cal fire proudly serving the city of murrieta "..just FYI.

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