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Published on Friday, February 7, 2014

EMS levy approval

The House Finance Committee is considering a bill, HB 2428, that would make two changes to Emergency Medical Services levies.

First, it clarifies that a six or 10-year EMS levy may be reauthorized at a lower rate with a simple majority vote. An initial EMS levy must still be approved by at least 60 percent of registered voters. In 2012, the law was amended to allow a six or 10-year EMS levy to be reauthorized by a simple majority, instead of the 60 percent approval required by an initial EMS levy, as long as the levy is an “uninterrupted continuation” of the existing one. There has been some confusion as to whether the 2012 changes allow simple majority approval to continue an EMS levy at a different rate. This bill clarifies that reauthorization at a lower rate may be approved by a simple majority.

Second, it changes the approval process for a countywide EMS levy. Current law requires a county to get approval from the legislative authority of each city with a population greater than 50,000 to place an EMS levy on the ballot. This bill instead would require the county to get approval of the majority of taxing districts with a population greater than 50,000 that receive EMS levy funds.

Categories: Budget & finance