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ANNUAL REAL PROPERTY TAX STATEMENTS

 

Alameda County Secured Property Tax Statement: Property Taxes & Special Assessments for FY 2017-2018 

The annual tax bill from Alameda County includes taxes, fixed charges, and/or special assessments levied by the City of Berkeley and other jurisdictions. Fixed charges and/or special assessments appear on the right side of your tax bill.  The tax bill is for the period from July 1 through June 30.

Property Tax Assessments & Fees for the 2017-2018 Tax Year

The following are descriptions of City of Berkeley and Berkeley Unified School District special taxes and assessments, as well as how they are calculated. The titles for these items, listed below, appear in an abbreviated version on your tax bill. Descriptions of taxes, fees, and assessments imposed by other agencies are not included here.

City Street Lighting 

There is no rate increase for FY 2018.

This assessment funds the maintenance and/or servicing of existing and future public lighting facilities, including traffic signals and public lighting. This assessment is based on building square footage and land use codes. Non-profits are not exempt from paying this assessment.

Residential      0.0108
Commercial                                   0.0432
Industrial      0.0216
Institutional 0.0108

Landscaping & Parks 

There is a 3.789% rate increase for FY 2018.  This tax funds maintenance of parks, city trees, and landscaping in the City of Berkeley. 

This tax is based on building square footage and land use codes. The City extends an exemption to non-profits for this tax.

Residential           0.1604
Non-Residential                          0.1604

City Refuse Collection

 There is a 3.00% rate increase for residential and commercial for FY 2018. For current rates, see Refuse: Rates by District.

Most single-family, condominium, and 2-unit residences have their refuse (garbage) collection services billed annually on the property tax bills. The amount billed depends on the size and number of receptacles and the frequency of service.  Non-profits are not exempt from paying this fee.

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City Library Services 

There is a 3.789% rate increase for FY 2018.

This tax supports the usual and current expenses of operating the City of Berkeley Library Services.

This tax is based on building square footage and land use codes. The City extends an exemption to non-profits for this tax.

Residential           0.2107
Non-Residential                          0.3186

Paramedic Supplemental (Emergency Medical Services)  

There is a 3.789% rate increase for FY 2018.

This tax provides funding to the Berkeley Fire Department for emergency paramedic and ambulance services. It is in addition to the County Service Area (CSA) Paramedic Assessment, which funds Countywide ambulance, paramedic, and trauma center care services. The City extends an exemption to non-profits for this tax.

This tax is based on building square footage and land use codes.

Residential           0.0366
Non-Residential                          0.0366

Emergency Services for the Severely Disabled 

There is a 3.789% rate increase for FY 2018.

This tax funds paratransit programs for eligible seniors and disabled persons.

The tax is based on building square footage and land use codes. The City extends an exemption to non-profits for this tax.

Residential           0.01519
Non-Residential                          0.01519

Fire Protection and Emergency Response and Preparedness Tax  

There is a 3.789% rate increase for FY 2018.

Measure GG was passed by Berkeley voters in November 2008.  The revenue from this tax is used to keep fire stations open, improve and expand paramedic services and medical service response, improve disaster preparedness in the community, and invest in a unified communication system that will allow Berkeley police and firefighters to better coordinate with other agencies.

The tax is based on building square footage and land use codes.    

Residential           0.05396
Non-Residential                          0.08165
Community Facility District 1 - Disaster Fire Equipment (CFD1) - Mello Roos

There is no rate increase for FY 2018.

This tax is used to finance the purchase of equipment, supplies, and storage facilities for enhanced response to natural disasters such as urban wildfires and earthquakes. This tax repays a 20-year bond and appeared for the first time on the FY 2002 tax bill. The final installment will be in FY 2022.

NOTE: The original notice for this tax was recorded with Alameda County on December 6, 2000 on all existing Berkeley parcels as “notice of special tax lien” with document #2000357307. This is a recorded notice and not a lien that clouds a title; it is a notice to potential buyers that a Mello Roos tax is in effect.

The tax is based on building square footage and land use codes. The City extends an exemption to non-profits for this tax.

Residential           0.0125
Non-Residential                          0.0125
Clean Storm Water

There is no rate increase for FY 2018.

This assessment is used to fund the maintenance and improvement of the storm water drainage system. Non-profits are not exempt from paying this assessment.

The assessment is based on a formula that includes the lot square footage (not building square footage), a run-off factor based on the type of building on the lot, and a standard runoff rate (based on an 'average' lot size).

  • Standard Runoff Unit = 2,196 SF
  • Rate per Runoff Unit = $50.00
  • Runoff Factors are:
    Single Residential           0.4
    Duplex                        0.4
    Other Residential 0.6
    Commercial 0.8
    Industrial 0.8
    Institutional 0.6
    Vacant Land 0.2 

For example, a duplex on a 3,000 square foot lot would be assessed as follows:
(3,000 Sq Ft x $50.00 x .4) / 2,196 Sq Ft = $27.32

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Berkeley Unified School District (BUSD) Taxes 

The following two school taxes are not administered by the City of Berkeley. Please direct questions regarding the details of these taxes to BUSD:

Berkeley Unified School District
2020 Bonar St, Ste 217 B 
Berkeley, CA  94702
www.berkeleyschools.net
(510) 644-8593

These two taxes are based on building square footage and land use codes. The School District extends an exemption to non-profits for these taxes.

BUSD Berkeley School Tax (Measure E1 of 2016)

 In November 2016, the voters of the City of Berkeley adopted Measure E1 of 2016. Funds are used to reduce class sizes, increase teacher training, and provide school enrichment programs.

The tax is based on building square footage and land use codes.

Residential           0.3700
Non-Residential                          0.3700


BUSD: School Maintenance (Measure H of 2010)

There is a 1.56% rate increase for FY 2018.

This tax was approved by Berkeley voters and provides for school safety and essential maintenance of BUSD buildings and grounds. The tax is based on building square footage and land use codes, unless otherwise noted.

Residential           0.06630
Non-Residential                          0.09940
Vacant Lot $21.04 (flat rate)

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Business Improvement Districts (BIDs)

Certain commercial districts in the City of Berkeley have special assessments on the property tax bills to fund improvements and beautification projects in those areas. Currently, there are three Business Improvement Districts (BIDs) that may appear on a tax bill:

  • Telegraph BID (3% increase in FY 2018)
  • North Shattuck BID (no increase in FY 2018)
  • Downtown BID  (2.5% increase in FY 2018) 

The amounts of these assessments are based on the particular BID and formulas that take into account the size and configuration of the commercial structure. 


Liens 

Some property tax bills have liens included with the special taxes and assessments. Liens are placed on tax bills when property owners fail to pay for billable services provided by the City of Berkeley or when a citation is issued against a property and remains unpaid. Typical liens include the following:

  • Residential Housing Inspection fees
  • Business License Tax on rental property
  • Environmental Health fees
  • Sidewalk Repairs
  • Refuse Services
  • Residential Housing Safety Program (annual) fees
  • Fire Inspection fees 
  • Toxics/Hazardous Material permit fees
  • Administrative Citations

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Underground Lighting/Utility Assessment District 

Thousand Oaks Heights Underground District is a 30-year assessment and first appeared on the property taxes in FY 2006.  The final assessment will appear on the FY 2034 property tax bill.  

This assessment pays for converting street lighting service from overhead wires to underground wiring of streetlights. 
 


Property Tax-Rate Breakdown (Ad Valorem - according to value) 

Your property tax bill includes other property-based taxes, which are found on the left side of your statement. In addition to the Countywide tax of 1%, your property tax statement includes additional items reflecting voter-approved debt service for payment of bonds issued by jurisdictions within your tax rate area to provide designated programs and services. These Ad Valorem taxes are based on the assessed value of the property, less any exemptions.

Taxing Agency Tax Rate
Countywide Tax        1.0000%
   
Voter Approved Debt Service                     
City of Berkeley 0.0492%

 


 Alameda County Property Assessment & Tax Information

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Frequently Asked Questions about Property Taxes 

Who sends out the property tax bills?

The property tax bills are sent by the Alameda County Treasurer-Tax Collector’s Office. This office can be contacted at:

What if I haven’t received a tax bill yet?

If you have not received your property tax bill by November, please contact the Treasurer-Tax Collector’s Office, listed above.

When are property tax payments due?

Taxes are payable in two equal installments. The first installment is due November 1, and is delinquent if not paid by December 10.  The second installment is due February 1, and is delinquent if not paid by April 10.   If you choose to pay the entire tax bill in a single payment, then it is due no later than December 10.

Where can I see the taxes and assessments for a specific property?

You can go directly to the Alameda County Treasurer-Tax collector's Office Property Tax Information website.

My organization is supposed to have a tax exemption for its non-profit status. Why is the exemption not reflected on the bill?

Tax exemption status does not automatically roll over every year. An application to renew exempt status has to be filed with the Alameda County Assessor's Office by February each year. The exemption status of a property can be verified on the Alameda County Assessor's Office Property Assessment Information website.

Note: The City of Berkeley does not determine non-profit exemption status and/or percentage. It relies on the information provided by the County Assessor's Office.

If the non-profit exemption paperwork is filed, you must provide copies of the Welfare Exemption Finding Sheet Form, BOE-267-F, to the Finance Department to receive an exemption from special taxes.

I have two properties and the property assessed at $500,000 has lower City of Berkeley special taxes than the property assessed at just $150,000. Why is this?

 The majority of City of Berkeley amd BUSD special assessments and taxes are based on building or lot square footage, not the assessed value.

I am a low-income property owner. Do I qualify for any discounts or refunds?

Yes, there are low-income refunds available on the following taxes and fees:

  • Library
  • Parks Landscape
  • Clean Storm Water
  • Mello Roos (Fire Protection)
  • Fire Protection and Emergency Response and Preparedness Tax
  • BUSD Facility Maintenance Tax (exemption for very low-income seniors only)
  • BUSD Measure A of 2006 (exemption for low-income seniors only)
  • Sewer (paid on your EBMUD water bill)
  • Utility Users Tax (paid on your cable services bill & phone bill)

For refund instructions and forms, please see the Very Low Income Refund Program.

For other questions or inquiries:

  • Call  Customer Service at (510) 981-7200, Monday through Thursday, 8:30 AM to 4:00 PM.
  • Visit the Finance Customer Service Center located at 1947 Center Street,1st Floor, Monday through Thursday, 8:30 AM to 4:00 PM.

 

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Finance Department, 1947 Center Street, Berkeley, CA 94704
Questions or comments? Email: finance@cityofberkeley.info Phone: (510) 981-7200
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