The Yucaipa City Council met on July 13, to conduct a public hearing and subsequently adopt Resolution No. 2020-27 forwarding amounts remaining unpaid on the certified solid waste accounts to the county of San Bernardino for addition to the 2020-2021 property tax rolls as a special assessment. There was no public testimony and therefore did not have a majority protest of the liens before the council.

The county of San Bernardino Solid Waste Management Division (SWMD) is responsible for the operation and management of the solid waste disposal system for the largest county in the United States. The disposal system consists of five regional landfills and nine transfer stations.

Assistant City Manager Jennifer Crawford said that the list before the council was a solid waste delinquent list. “It is comprised of single-family residential, mobilehome parks and commercial accounts.”

Notices were mailed to each property owner whose account was delinquent and potentially in an assessment position regarding this public hearing.

Crawford continued, “With the incorporation of single-family tax roll billing the amount of residential delinquent accounts has decreased by 35.75% just over the past year.”

From the past fiscal year, last year the delinquent residential accounts totaled 842, this year the total is 541 and the city is expecting that to drop an additional 50 accounts by the time of submission to the county tax assessor’s office and is anticipated the list will drop to approximately 500. “We are seeing a decline in residential single-family due to tax roll billing.” said Crawford.

Single-family residential delinquent accounts represent the residential unpaid accounts from last years May/June 2019 balances that were not captured as part of the July 1, 2019 implementation of tax roll billing due to the required delinquent notices received.

“We will not get down to zero in single-family residential delinquencies just because if people come on mid-year or they have a change in their service and they do not pay their May/June bill, then due to noticing requirements of their late payment, it misses the timing for tax roll billing. Our numbers will dramatically reduce from years past but they will probably never go down to zero. I can foresee based on the last couple of years trends, they will get down to around 100, and that is what the goal would be,” said Crawford.

There are 12,542 single-family residential customers with 541 delinquent accounts that equates to 4.31% that are delinquent.

Any property owner appearing on the delinquent list who makes appropriate payment arrangements with Yucaipa Disposal prior to Aug. 21 will have their account removed from the list prior to forwarding the list to the county for the 2020-2021 tax roll lien.

The city, county and Yucaipa Disposal will all add administrative charges for this process, in addition to the actual delinquency amount owed to Yucaipa Disposal. Since Yucaipa Disposal is covering all direct expenses involved in the lien process, there is a $6 per delinquent account charged by the city to cover the administrative costs incurred by the Finance Department to receive payments from the county and to make remittance payments back to Yucaipa Disposal.

Mayor David Avila said, “One of the things that I would like to see in the future is an opportunity to know what the billing is for a one-year subscription.”

Avila also said, “Unfortunately I don’t get any notification what my potential bill would be. I did receive a notice in Burrtec’s quarterly flyer that indicated that we have the opportunity to do single billing by July 17 followed up by a postcard also indicating that but there was really no rate charge attached to that. I think that we should have the opportunity to know what we are paying ahead of time and be given that option to decide to pay it before the deadline or break it up into the tax bill. It would help me and I think that it would help many other people who prefer to keep it off the tax rolls.”

Councilmember Greg Bogh agreed with Avila and added that he had some other ideas that could possibly be worked out in the committee meetings for the next year.

Mayor Pro Tem Denise Allen said, “I just want to say that in one-year to see a 42% reduction in the delinquent accounts for services rendered is a significant move in the right direction so I believe that the tax roll billing was the right choice.”

The item passed 5-0.

Supporting documents available at yucaipa.org.

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