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Twain Harte Community Services Shares Latest Actions

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Twain Harte, CA – A local community services district is foregoing tax assessment rate increases to help customers weather economic impacts of the COVID-19 pandemic.

The Twain Harte Community Services District (THCSD) Board of Directors at its May meeting voted to make the decision not to apply those increases in the upcoming fiscal year for fire and emergency services.

District officials say in 2002 and again in 2011, the Twain Harte community voted to pass special benefit assessments to improve fire protection and emergency services, which supplement the small portion of property tax revenue THCSD receives to provide the services. To ensure the assessments would cover continually increasing costs over time, the community also approved an allowance for annual inflation adjustments up to 4 percent based on the local inflation index.

The board normally approves these annual inflation increases, which officials say have enabled their fire finances to remain healthy and capable of handling rising costs, but THCSD will not be levying inflation increases this year.

“We are proud to be able to help our community during this time. When voting for the fire assessments years ago, Twain Harte residents not only voiced their value for excellent fire services, they also put us in a position to continue to provide high-level services during hard times,” states THCSD Board President Eileen Mannix. “Their foresight combined with fiscally responsible management has enabled us to give back when our community needs it most.”

The decision to levy lower rates will not diminish the district’s services. In fact, officials note that the annual assessments have enabled THCSD to continually improve fire and emergency services.

In fact, this month the Insurance Services Office (ISO) recognized THCSD’s service improvements by upgrading the district’s Public Protection Classification (PPC) rating from a 3 to a 2 – a rating held only by the top 4 percent of fire departments in the nation. The ISO’s PPC rating is recognized nationally and is based mainly on the quality of the fire department’s staffing, training, response time, and other related factors along with the ability of the community’s water system to provide water supply for firefighting.

“A direct result of our continual drive for excellence, this upgraded rating is a huge accomplishment for our District,” says Fire Chief Todd McNeal. “It is very rare for a rural district to rate this high and we couldn’t be more proud.”

The district board is meeting Wednesday at 9 a.m. and will be addressing the budget for the new fiscal year. The public can call in at 669 900-6833 or attend by using the Zoom platform video conference link available here using Meeting ID# 849 7762 4544.