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Squandering taxes, mitigation fees

To the North San Juan Fire Protection District (NSJFPD) board of directors: “You have been squandering our tax dollars and mitigation fees for years.” The outside audit report two years ago stated “The District’s management did not fully understand the implementation requirements of the mitigation legislation and ordinance” and yet you spent $221,584 in mitigation fees over several years. The 1991 Abbey Group study you adopted defined “habitable space” which contradicts the California Uniform Building Code definition that space such as decks and porches are “uninhabitable space.” Not only is the Abbey Group study out of date but it is also flawed. Your recent letter to me stated “the cost of such a study at this time would direct resources away from fire and emergency operations.” Well I think you need to sell off some assets to pay for a new mitigation fee study that proves the relationship between what you charge and what you are spending. According to your Web site 29 percent of our tax dollars go to administrative paper pushing salaries and not fire/rescue services. Cut overhead to pay for a new study. All Nevada County fire districts need to look at their mitigation fees.

Donald Sauer

Nevada City


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