MARIN COUNTY FLOOD CONTROL DISTRICT ZONE NO. 1
MEASURE E: Novato Watershed and Flood Protection. To reduce flooding, improve water quality, restore fish and wildlife habitat, and adapt to sea level rise, shall a special parcel tax be levied within Zone No. 1 for 18 years based on land use and parcel size, including $47 per single-family home, raising approximately $1,100,000 annually, with annual audits, low income senior exemptions, and funds to be spent only on projects in the Novato area?
COUNTY COUNSEL’S IMPARTIAL ANALYSIS OF MEASURE E
FLOOD CONTROL DISTRICT ZONE NO. 1 SPECIAL TAX
This Measure was placed on the ballot by the Board of Supervisors of the Marin County Flood Control and Water Conservation District.
If this measure is approved by a two-thirds vote, a special tax will be levied in Flood Control Zone No. 1 of the Marin County Flood Control and Water Conservation District in the amount of:
- Thirty Dollars ($30) annually per parcel for Farm, Ag and Unimproved;
- Forty-Seven Dollars ($47) annually per parcel for Single Family Residential and Multi-Family Residential of less than 0.25 acres;
- One Hundred, Fourteen Dollars ($114) annually per parcel for Multi-Family Residential of 0.25 acres to less than 1.00 acre;
- Two Hundred, Ninety-Four Dollars ($294) annually per parcel for Multi-Family Residential of 1.00 acres to less than 10.00 acres;
- Four Hundred, Eighty-One Dollars ($481) annually per parcel for Multi-Family Residential of 10 acres and above;
- Sixty-Seven Dollars ($67) annually per parcel for Commercial/Industrial of less than 0.25 acres;
- Two Hundred, Eighty-Three Dollars ($283) annually per parcel for Commercial/Industrial of 0.25 acres to less than 1 acre;
- Five Hundred, Eighty-Seven Dollars ($587) annually per parcel for Commercial/Industrial of 1 acre to less than 10 acres; and
- Twelve Hundred and Fifty-Four Dollars ($1,254) annually per parcel for Commercial/Industrial of 10 acres and above.
This special tax will be levied beginning in fiscal year 2018-2019 for eighteen (18) years. Proceeds from the tax will be used to reduce flooding, improve water quality, restore fish and wildlife habitat, and adapt to sea level rise to be spent on such projects only within the area of Flood Control Zone No. 1. The ballot measure provides for the Board of Supervisors to enact a low income senior exemption from the tax imposed by this Measure. This special tax is expected to raise $1.1 million dollars per year and is subject to annual audits.
s/BRIAN E. WASHINGTON
Marin County Counsel
ARGUMENT IN FAVOR OF MEASURE E
When major rainstorms hit Novato, floods can block our roads and highways and damage our homes and businesses. This year Highway 37 was closed twice, once for almost a month, snarling traffic throughout the area.
Much has been done to reduce flooding - but more still needs to be done. A rigorous multi-year analysis of the entire Novato watershed has identified new projects that would help drain local streets, speed flood waters out to the Bay and prevent expensive repair work. Lower Novato Creek would be widened to help absorb storm surges and sea level rise. Increased tidal flows in and out would improve water quality, help scour sediment and reduce costly dredging. Habitat for fish and wildlife would be enhanced and public trails would be built on new, stronger levees.
Current taxes pay for essential creek, levee, storm drain and pump maintenance - but new funding will be needed for new projects. Some would come from the proposed parcel tax. The rest would come from State and Federal matching grants that go to communities who tax themselves for flood protection and habitat restoration.
The funds raised by this parcel tax will be held in a separate account and can be spent only in the Novato area on storm drainage and flood reduction. The new projects will be selected through an open public process based on cost-effectiveness and full environmental review. The multi-agency Watershed Program Committee will audit and report annually on the spending of the funds raised by this tax. Visit www.ProtectNovato.com for more information.
Even if you don’t live in a flood hazard zone, you and your loved ones can be trapped by flooded streets and put in even more danger if public safety and emergency crews can’t get through.
Please vote YES for Measure E.
REBUTTAL TO ARGUMENT IN FAVOR OF MEASURE E
The Yes on Flood Tax Argument uses scare tactics to sell a tax. We use FACTS from County reports and validated tax figures to educate and empower.
The pro argument is not well grounded in fact.
After reading the Staff Reports, we have to wonder how proponents reach their conclusions.
- Highway 37 Flooding was neither The Zone’s nor Novato taxpayer’s responsibility.
- Zone levees performed well – water did not need to be released into seasonal flood basins because levels were manageable.
- The Zone has already applied for special project funds from FEMA, FERP and LLAP.
Proponents obviously haven’t investigated what money is available for flood control:
- $1,500,000 in Zone reserves for FLOOD CONTROL
- $2,000,000 annual revenue for FLOOD CONTROL
- $25,000,000 annual revenue for Bay Area FLOOD CONTROL & Habitat Restoration
Did Pro-tax proponents even seek SPECIAL PROJECT FUNDING?
- Critical flood prevention measures should get priority funding in yearly budget allocations. They happen every Spring!
- Special flood and habitat restoration projects are exactly what you already pay for with the San Francisco Bay Restoration Authority tax starting this calendar year.
- The Zone has income from the Stonetree driving range which leases our Seasonal Flood Plain.
This is an old fashioned shake down, Novato. Don’t buy it! Visit NoNovatoFlood.com to calculate online the effect on your tax bill and read our researched and source referenced information on why this tax is an unnecessary tax grab.
Vote No on Measure E.
Former Candidate Marin County Board of Supervisors
Engineering Firm Owner
ARGUMENT AGAINST MEASURE E
Just Say NO to Redundant Taxes.
Starting in 2017, every parcel in the entire Bay Area will pay an annual twenty year, $12 parcel tax to the regional San Francisco Bay Restoration Authority for the same flood control and wetlands protections Measure E claims to address.
Another Tax! Really?
County of Marin homeowners pay the highest average property tax in California. Part of our basic property tax already pays for flood control. Since 1984, we’ve paid an additional annual assessment of up to $37 for single family homes and $200 for multi-family units. Commercial properties currently pay as much as $522. Nearly every property owner’s special flood control tax bill at least doubles under this ill-advised measure.
We Already Pay for Flood Control
We already pay more than $2,000,000 annually for flood control. That doesn’t include our share of the new $25,000,000 regional tax. With over $1,500,000 in reserves, the Flood Zone can fund emergencies, perform repairs and attract State and/or Federal grants. If that’s not enough, the bureaucrats should sharpen their pencils and prioritize safety over pet projects.
Highway 37 Flooding Is Not Our Zone’s Responsibility.
The Zone Engineer reported that Highway 37’s 2017 flood occurred because Caltrans levees failed twice. Keeping Highways passable is the State’s responsibility. California just hiked gas taxes for highway maintenance. Novato’s 2015 sales tax extension covers local road maintenance. Did we mention Measure E is redundant?
Novato property owners already have as many as 11 extra taxes on their property tax bills. And this would add another. There’s no free lunch—parcel taxes drive up rents and only a few low-income seniors might be exempt. We pay our taxes, and now they want a new tax to pay for what they should already be doing.
Vote No on Measure E.
Learn more at NoNovatoFlood.org
Former Candidate Marin Board of Supervisors
Engineering Firm Owner
REBUTTAL TO ARGUMENT AGAINST MEASURE E
The opponent’s claims are wrong about this important measure to PROTECT NOVATO!
Measure E isn’t redundant with any other taxes; the current maintenance assessment isn’t $37, we are not entitled to any share of the regional wetlands restoration tax; $1,500,000 reserve is not enough to fund emergencies, perform repairs and attract grants for projects worth up to $40,000,000!
LET’S BE TRANSPARENT … Here’s the truth!
Primary flood protection for the Novato area is the responsibility of Flood Control Zone 1, not the City of Novato or the County of Marin. Currently Flood Control Zone 1 collects $9 per home per year that is used to maintain pumps, levees and dredge and clear waterways - enough for maintenance but not to pay for needed flood control projects.
Flood Prevention is OUR community responsibility, not anyone else’s!
There are sources of State and Federal money that can apply to flood control improvements. Typically these funds are available in the form of matching grants. But only communities that tax themselves have access to government matching funds. The Measure AA regional tax is not designated for flood control from storm runoff but for wetlands restoration, sea level rise and flood risk from the Bay.
Measure E enables our community to address flood control proactively and leverage State and Federal funds to get the most protection for our property from our investment.
Visit www.ProtectNovato.com for a detailed rebuttal of arguments made by opponents.
DON’T BE MISLEAD!!! Measure E PROTECTS NOVATO… Please Vote YES
s/CAROLE DILLON KNUTSON
FULL TEXT OF MEASURE E
RESOLUTION NO. 2017-81
RESOLUTION OF THE MARIN COUNTY FLOOD CONTROL AND WATER CONSERVATION DISTRICT BOARD OF SUPERVISORS CALLING FOR AN ELECTION TO IMPOSE A SPECIAL TAX UPON PARCELS LOCATED WITHIN FLOOD CONTROL ZONE NO. 1 FOR THE PURPOSE OF REDUCING COMMUNITY AND ROADWAY FLOODING; RESTORING CREEK AND MARSH HABITAT, AND ADAPTING TO SEA LEVEL RISE
WHEREAS, the Board of Supervisors of the Marin County Flood Control and Water Conservation District, and upon the recommendation of the Flood Control Zone No. 1 Advisory Board, determines that it is in the best interests of the property owners within Zone No. 1 to provide for increased protection from flooding risk; and
WHEREAS, pursuant to all applicable state law, including California Water Code – Appendix 68-5(11) and Government Code Section 50075 et seq., and in compliance with California Constitution Articles XIIIA and XIIIC, the Board of Supervisors of the Marin County Flood Control and Water Conservation District is hereby authorized to adopt this Resolution to establish and impose (subject to voter approval) a special tax upon all taxable real property located within Flood Control Zone No. 1; and
WHEREAS, the Board of Supervisors of the Marin County Flood Control and Water Conservation District calls for an election to impose a special tax in the amounts specified per the parcel tax rates described in Exhibit A beginning with fiscal year 2018-2019; and
WHEREAS, the special tax, if approved by the electorate, will not exceed the spending limit pursuant to California Constitution Article XIIIB; and
WHEREAS, the Board of Supervisors of the Marin County Flood Control and Water Conservation District conducted a public hearing on this matter on August 1, 2017.
NOW, THEREFORE, BE IT RESOLVED that, subject to voter approval, the Marin County Tax Collector shall collect the special tax annually in the same manner and subject to the same penalties as County property taxes are collected. The County shall be entitled to deduct its reasonable costs incurred collecting the special tax before such tax is remitted to the Marin County Flood Control and Water Conservation District.
BE IT FURTHER RESOLVED that the special tax established by this Resolution shall be submitted to the registered voters within Flood Control Zone No. 1 in the Local District Election on November 7, 2017. The question submitted to the voters shall read substantially as follows:
Marin County Flood Control District Zone No. 1 Special Tax
Novato Watershed and Flood Protection. To reduce flooding, improve water quality, restore fish and wildlife habitat, and adapt to sea level rise, shall a special parcel tax be levied within Zone No. 1 for 18 years based on land use and parcel size, including $47 per single-family home, raising approximately $1,100,000 annually, with annual audits, low income senior exemptions, and funds to be spent only on projects in the Novato area?
BE IT FURTHER RESOLVED that the special tax is for the specific purposes of providing increased flood protection for Marin County Flood Control Zone No. 1 by reducing community and roadway flooding; restoring creek and marsh habitat for fish and wildlife; adapting to sea-level rise; and evaluating and implementing measures to increase the scouring of sediment in lower Novato Creek to improve the conveyance of flood waters to the bay.
BE IT FURTHER RESOLVED that the watershed and technical advisory committees created through the Novato Watershed Program will remain as an advisory group on this special tax.
BE IT FURTHER RESOLVED that to the maximum extent possible the Novato Watershed Program and Flood Control Zone No.1 will leverage local, State and Federal grants.
BE IT FURTHER RESOLVED that the proceeds for the special tax be applied only to the specific purposes stated above and subject to CEQA requirements prior to their implementation.
BE IT FURTHER RESOLVED that should the electorate approve the special tax, the proceeds shall be placed in a special fund to be used solely for the purposes stated above.
BE IT FURTHER RESOLVED that should the electorate approve the special tax, the Flood Control Zone No. 1 could issue bonds consistent with Water Code Section 68.5.
BE IT FURTHER RESOLVED that the Marin County Auditor as chief fiscal officer, pursuant to Water Code Section 68-7, is hereby directed to prepare an annual report pursuant to Government Code Section 50075.3. The chief fiscal officer shall receive actual necessary expenses in the performance of official duties performed pursuant to this resolution payable from the funds of the Marin County Flood Control and Water Conservation District.
BE IT FURTHER RESOLVED that this Board of Supervisors of the Marin County Flood Control and Water Conservation District hereby calls and orders a Local District Election to be held on November 7, 2017 for the purpose of voting on a ballot measure to approve the special tax.
BE IT FURTHER RESOLVED that pursuant to the provisions of Elections Code Section 10002, the Board of Supervisors of the Marin County Flood Control and Water Conservation District hereby requests that the Registrar of Voters render all services necessary for the conduct of the election, which include the following matters: coordination of election precincts, polling places, voting booths, voting systems and election officers; printing and mailing of voter pamphlets; preparation of tabulation of result of votes cast. The cost of the ballot election is hereby requested to be borne by the County of Marin through the Countywide Watershed Project.
BE IT FURTHER RESOLVED that to the extent applicable, under Elections Code Section 10418, all proceedings related to, connected with, and incidental to the election shall be regulated and performed in accordance with the provisions of law regulating a statewide election.
BE IT FURTHER RESOLVED that the proclamation or notice of the election shall provide that Article 3 of Chapter 2 of Division 9 of the Elections Code (Section 9160 et seq.) relating to arguments concerning County measures applies and County Counsel is directed to prepare an impartial analysis.
BE IT FURTHER RESOLVED that the special tax shall be deemed established and shall be in effect beginning with the 2018/19 fiscal year upon certification of the election results evidencing approval by at least two-thirds of the registered voters voting thereon. The special tax shall be null and void as of twelve o’clock midnight, June 30, 2036, and shall have no force and effect whatsoever after said time and date.
BE IT FURTHER RESOLVED that if any provision of this resolution or the application thereof to any person or circumstances is held invalid or unconstitutional by any court of competent jurisdiction, such invalidity or unconstitutionality shall not affect any other provisions or applications, and to this end the provisions of this resolution are declared to be severable. The Board of Supervisors of the Marin County Flood Control and Water Conservation District and the electorate, should it approve the special tax, do hereby declare that they would have adopted and approved this resolution and the special tax and each section, subsection, sentence, clause, phrase, part or portion thereof, irrespective of the fact that any one or more sections, subsections, clauses, phrases, parts or portions thereof, be declared invalid or unconstitutional.
BE IT FURTHER RESOLVED that pursuant to Government Code Section 50077.5 and Code of Civil Procedure Section 860, any judicial action or proceeding to attack, review, set aside, or annul this special tax, if approved by the voters, shall be commenced within 60 days of the effective date of this resolution.
APPROVED AND ADOPTED at a regular meeting of the Board of Supervisors of the Marin County Flood Control and Water Conservation District held on the 1st day of August, 2017, by the following vote:
AYES: SUPERVISORS: Dennis Rodoni, Katie Rice, Damon Connolly, Kathrin Sears, Judy Arnold
President, Board of Supervisors Marin County Flood Control and Water Conservation District
Parcel Tax Rates
Parcel Tax Rates are assigned to each Land Use Classification as follows:
- Farm, Ag & Unimproved. $30 per parcel annually
- Single Family Residential. $47 per parcel annually
- Multi-Family Residential. Based on parcel size as follows:
- 0.00 acres < parcel size < 0.25 acres $47 per parcel annually
- 0.25 acres ≤ parcel size < 1.00 acre $114 per parcel annually
- 1.00 acres ≤ parcel size < 10.00 acres $294 per parcel annually
- 10.00 acres ≤ parcel size < 100.00 acres $481 per parcel annually
- 100.00 acres ≤ parcel size $481 per parcel annually
- Commercial/Industrial. Based on parcel size as follows:
- 0.00 acres < parcel size < 0.25 acres $67 per parcel annually
- 0.25 acres ≤ parcel size < 1.00 acre $283 per parcel annually
- 1.00 acres ≤ parcel size < 10.00 acres $587 per parcel annually
- 10.00 acres ≤ parcel size < 100.00 acres $1254 per parcel annually
- 100.00 acres ≤ parcel size $1254 per parcel annually
- Non-Taxed. $0 per parcel annually