Where Your Property Tax Dollars Go

Roy Given, Department of Finance

Questions and Answers

Where do your basic (1%) Property Taxes go?

Where do your basic property taxes go? Schools = 42.7%, County = 23.9%, Cities = 13.8%, Districts = 12.9%, ERAF = 6.7%

42.7% Schools, 12.8% Districts, 13.7% Cities, 23.7% County and 7.1% ERAF.

Find detailed information on your parcel by visiting the Property Tax Inquiry page.

How much do Marin property owners pay in basic (1%) property taxes?

Basic Property Taxes Collected
Fiscal Year Net Taxes
Fiscal 2000-01 $309,948,562
Fiscal 2001-02 $340,557,006
Fiscal 2002-03 $364,761,766
Fiscal 2003-04 $390,423,821
Fiscal 2004-05 $417,532,564
Fiscal 2005-06 $454,131,515
Fiscal 2006-07 $492,620,139
Fiscal 2007-08 $525,539,470
Fiscal 2008-09 $555,600,135
Fiscal 2009-10 $564,723,778
Fiscal 2010-11 $557,641,421
Fiscal 2011-12 $561,516,421
Fiscal 2012-13 $566,153,886
Fiscal 2013-14 $587,788,877
Fiscal 2014-15 $622,044,403
Fiscal 2015-16 $665,726,061
Fiscal 2016-17 $708,004,365

How is it distributed?

The allocation of property taxes to government agencies varies depending on historic property tax levels and the agencies that provide services in your area. The following table is provided for Marin County governmental agencies.

County of Marin Tax Distribution By Local Agency
  Fiscal Year 2014-15 Fiscal Year 2015-16 Fiscal Year 2016-17
  Net Taxes Percent Net Taxes Percent Net Taxes Percent
County $151,952,973 24.4% $159,122,562  23.9%  $167,658,661  23.7% 
Cities $86,851,636
14.0% $91,926,674
13.8% $ 97,312,998 13.7%
Districts $81,068,388 13.0% $86,009,496
12.9% $ 90,828,115 12.8%
Schools $265,273,779
42.6% $283,966,141
42.7% $302,235,409 42.7%
ERAF $36,897,627
5.9% $44,701,188
6.7% $ 49,969,183 7.1%
Total $622,044,403
100.0% $665,726,061 100.0% $708,004,365 100.0%

Tax Distribution Information by City:

Where can I find general information related to California cities, counties and special districts?

What is ERAF?

It is a mechanism, enacted in July of 1992 by the State Legislature, to shift local tax revenues from cities, counties, and special districts to a state controlled Education Revenue Augmentation Fund. The state uses this fund to reduce their obligation to the schools. ERAF funds have been used by the State to help school and community college districts meet minimum funding requirements.

Why was ERAF created?

Proposition 13, the 1978 ballot measure capped property taxes in the state and thereby sharply diminished the property tax revenues that counties, cities, and special districts had to provide services. ERAF allowed the legislature to reallocate the property tax among local governments. In the midst of the recession in 1991-92, the State Legislature exercised this power to take city, county, and special district property taxes to fund the state government's obligation to support schools. The amount of the estimated shift for fiscal year 2010-11 and the prior two fiscal years from Marin County local agencies to ERAF is as shown below.

County of Marin ERAF Contributions by Local Agencies
Fiscal Year 2014-15
  Gross Contribution Excess ERAF Net Contribution Percent
County $59,160,510
$34,464,196
$24,696,314
66.9%
Cities $14,649,890
$8,534,357
$6,115,533
16.6%
Districts $14,578,598
$8,492,818
$6,085,780
16.5%
Total $88,388,998
$51,491,371
$36,897,627
100.0%
County of Marin ERAF Contributions by Local Agencies
Fiscal Year 2015-16
  Gross Contribution Excess ERAF Net Contribution Percent
County $63,341,511
$33,441,883 $29,899,628 66.9%
Cities $15,728,722
$8,304,160 $7,424,562 16.6%
Districts $15,627,960
$8,250,962 $7,376,998 16.5%
Total $94,698,193
$49,997,005 $44,701,188 100.0%
County of Marin ERAF Contributions by Local Agencies
Fiscal Year 2016-17
  Gross Contribution Excess ERAF Net Contribution Percent
County $67,410,589 $33,981,476 $33,429,113 66.9%
Cities $16,779,500 $8,458,496 $8,321,004 16.7%
Districts $16,573,937 $8,354,872 $8,219,065 16.4%
Total $100,764,026 $50,794,843 $49,969,183
100.0%

The information on this page was provided by Roy Given, Director of Finance.