Property Taxes

Property Tax Payments Make a Difference

Roseville, CA- Taxes can be a touchy subject for many reasons. However, many of us aren’t always aware of how our money gets spent. Placer County tax officials offer a little insight into where your hard earned dollars go. (Originally published Dec, 2018)

Placer County, CA- Many property owners wonder were their tax dollars go. Property taxes provide funding for schools, public safety and criminal justice, road maintenance, parks, and public health. Under Proposition 13, all taxable property is subject to a base tax rate based on 1% of value at the time of initial assessment, with increases restricted to the lesser of real estate market increase of 2%. Of this base tax amount, all parcels in the county are grouped into tax rate areas.

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“Public safety, schools, roads, and health and social services exist because of property taxes…”

Educating our Children

The tax rate areas are based on a group of parcels whose revenues are distributed to the same local agencies. For example, a set of parcels in the Eureka Unified School District would be in one tax rate area, while parcels in the Placer Union High School District are in another set of tax rate areas. Across these tax rate areas, Placer County schools receive an average of 61% of the property tax revenue collected annually, which provides the core funding for instruction, materials and facilities.

Cities receive an average of 7.59% of the base Proposition 13 property taxes. Special districts receive an average of 5.83% of the base Proposition 13 property taxes. These districts include fire protection districts, cemetery districts, the resource conservation district, water districts and park districts. The County receives an average of 17.75% of the property tax revenue which supports critical functions like the Placer County Sheriff’s office, roads, the District Attorney, public health clinics, veterans’ services, social services like the In-Home Support Services which helps seniors and disabled residents stay in their homes, and much more.

“Property taxpayers provide the financial foundation for most of the critical services residents and businesses receive from their local governments.”

Law Enforcement

“The Placer County Sheriff’s Office relies heavily on property tax revenues through the County General Fund to serve the people of Placer County by providing law enforcement to the unincorporated areas, from the Sacramento County line to the Nevada state line at Lake Tahoe, plus providing contract law enforcement services to the city of Colfax and the township of Loomis,” said Mark Giacomini, Administrative Services Manager with the Placer County Sheriff.

The Sheriff’s Office also utilizes property tax revenues to help provide jail services, coroner’s services, court security, and marshal duties to the entire county. For Fiscal Year 2018-19, approximately 60% of the Sheriff’s Office total revenues are provided by property tax revenues.

Critical Services

“Property taxpayers provide the financial foundation for most of the critical services residents and businesses receive from their local governments,” said Jenine Windeshausen, Placer County Treasurer-Tax Collector. “Public safety, schools, roads, and health and social services exist because of property taxes. Payments made on time help keep these essential services operating smoothly.”

Donations with Tax Payments?

Property tax payers also have the opportunity to make donations with tax payments to four important Trusts Funds: the Placer Legacy Open Space Trust Fund, the Children’s Trust Fund, the Library Trust Fund and the Animal Services Trust Fund.

Placer Legacy Open Space Trust Fund supports open space and habitat protection throughout Placer while addressing the needs of agriculture and recreation.

Children’s Trust Fund helps keep children and youth safe, and at home. For many years donations to the Children’s Trust fund has supported efforts to help children with risk factors associated with child abuse and neglect, and who witness domestic violence.

Library Trust Fund supports children’s programs like story time, the bookmobile services, and adult literacy, as well as the purchasing of new materials, e-books, audio books and more.

Animal Services Trust Fund supports efforts to reunite lost pets with their owners, place unclaimed animals in loving homes, educate the public on responsible pet ownership, protect public health and safety, and ensure humane treatment of animals throughout the County.

Donations make a difference for all of the programs.

“Donations help keep our library system strong and healthy, so we can grow our community literacy, support lifelong learning, and ensure that all our children enjoy reading,” said Mary George, Director of Library Services. “Thank you to everyone for the generosity and kindness.”

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