Tallahassee is close to the top city for fire taxes, depending on latest increase by Tallahasssee last year.

BH:  Tallahassee’s fire tax brings in a whopping $39 million to city coffers.  Most Florida cities do not have a fire tax.  Some Tallahassee commissioner argue that Tallahassee is a low property tax citie at 4.2 mills, which brings in about $40 million.  The fire tax is simply a property tax with a different name.  That means the effective property tax is about 8.6 mills.

Copy of meeting notice and report:


Apr 22, 2015 – City Commission Meeting & Summary



Resolution 15-R-21 – Approval of Fire Services Fee — Reese Goad, Utility Services (DEFER VOTE ON THIS ITEM UNTIL AFTER PUBLIC HEARING–ITEM 15.01)
Action, Discussion
Preferred Date Apr 22, 2015

Absolute Date Apr 22, 2015
Fiscal Impact


Dollar Amount




Budget Source

The recommended rates are projected to generate approximately $38.9 million annually during the five-year period October 1, 2015 through September 30, 2020. Approximately $33.5 million would be collected from private property assessments and $5.4 million from fees on governmental properties.

Recommended Action

Option 1: Hold the first and only public hearing and adopt Resolution 15-R-21 to amend the fire services assessments and fees effective October 1, 2015.

This projected five-year budget includes the following:

  • The removal of all EMS-related costs.
  • An accounting of all other sources of Fire Department revenue such as fire inspection fees, to ensure that the assessment recovers the “net” cost of fire protection only.
  • All associated operating, personnel, equipment and maintenance costs for Station #16 at Weems Road.
  • A second set of bunker gear for all firefighting personnel as well as extrication equipment.
  • The addition of a Fire Education Officer and five Inspectors to the Fire Prevention Division during the five-year budget planning period to increase the Department’s proactive educational, inspection, arson investigation and fire safety training efforts.
  • Construction costs to increase the size of the garage bays at multiple stations so that they can house trucks and apparatus of varying sizes to allow for enhanced equipment staging and housing at all fire stations.
  • The personnel costs associated with the Collective Bargaining Agreement that will affect the Fire Department budget in the period FY 2016 through FY 2017.
  • Steve Stewart has done some excellent reporting on this subject.  See http://tallahasseereports.com/?s=fire+assessment+fee&x=1&y=6