A zone for road maintenance is formed when a group of residents and/or property owners (“proponents”) want to have improved or maintained roads.  The zone is financed by the property owners through a service charge or special tax added to the Special Assessment section of the property tax bill for all the parcels in the boundary of the Zone.

The California Constitution requires that a mailed ballot election must be conducted in order to place or increase a charge or tax on the property tax bill. Therefore, in order to form a zone, a mailed ballot election must pass.

Steps for Forming a Zone:

  1. Proponents may submit a request to the Special Districts Department by providing the following items:
    1. The type of services desired (grading, paving, snowplowing, etc.)
    2. The road(s) to be maintained; 
    3. A list of the parcels in the proposed area (if the information is available)
    4. A map of the proposed area; 
    5. A deposit made payable to Special Districts Department, in the amount prescribed in the current Board Approved fee schedule.  Refundable only if the zone is formed.
  2. Once the information is received, Special Districts Department will then:
    1. Identify the boundaries of the zone; prepare a parcel list;
    2. Prepare the scope of work for the project and/or services to be provided;
    3. Determine the cost of the project and/or services provided. These costs include the total project cost, annual maintenance cost, and the annual per parcel cost;
    4. Conduct a feasibility study, if needed, by mailing a survey to both the property owners and registered voters who reside in the area;
    5. Conduct an informational meeting via webinar/tele-seminar or in person for the owners and voters explaining the project, annual costs, zone formation procedures, and hear comments and answer questions.
  3. If the survey results are negative, Special Districts Department will inform the proponents and take no further action.
  4. If the survey results are positive, Special Districts Department will:
    1. Collect the election costs from proponents, refundable only if the election is successful and the zone forms.
    2. Proceed to the Board of Supervisors to adopt a resolution of intent to form the zone and call for a mailed ballot election for the service charge or special tax; 
    3. Conduct the election.
  5. If the mailed ballot election fails, Special Districts Department will inform the proponents and take no further action.
  6. If the mailed ballot election passes, Special Districts Department will:
    1. Request the Board of Supervisors conduct a public hearing to hear any protests to the formation of the zone. If there are not sufficient protests, the Board will adopt a Resolution forming the zone and confirm the election results.
    2. The service charge or special tax is placed on the following year’s tax roll for the property tax bill mailed in October of each year.
    3. After the first installation of property taxes is received, the proponents will be refunded their deposit and election costs.;

The total time necessary to form an improvement zone is 5 months to 1 year depending on the complexity of the proposal and time of year the zone is formed.  Please note, the zone must be formed by the first week of August to be on the property tax bill for that year.

The work within the newly formed zone will begin after the funds from the property tax bill are received. Please contact the Special Districts Department at (909) 386-8800 or if you have any questions or require additional information.