The Hilltop Landscape Maintenance District (HLMD) was formed in 1986 under the provisions of Chapter 12.60 of the Richmond Municipal Code ("City of Richmond Maintenance District Procedure") to provide a method of financing for enhanced maintenance services in the Hilltop area, including general area cleanup, maintenance of directional and entrance signs, and maintenance of the street and open-space landscaping within the area.
On November 5, 1996, California voters approved Proposition 218, entitled "Right to Vote on Taxes Act", which added Articles XIIIC and XIIID to the California Constitution. While its title refers only to taxes, Proposition 218 established new procedural requirements for the formation and administration of assessment districts. Proposition 218 also required that with certain specified exceptions, beginning July 1, 1997 all existing, new or increased assessments shall comply with Article XIIID. As a result of the passage of Proposition 218, in 1998 the City of Richmond ordered that a new Engineer's Report be prepared for the Hilltop Landscape Maintenance District that:
1. Separated the general benefits, which resulted from the proposed improvements, from the special benefits to be received by those parcels being assessed in accordance with the requirements of Article XIIID of the California Constitution;
2. Annexed additional lands into the existing Hilltop Landscape Maintenance District; and
3. Established a range of future assessments, up to a stated maximum amount, in accordance with the requirements of Article XIIID including the authority to increase the maximum amount annually by a specified CPI without going back through the assessment ballot procedures of Section 4 of Article XIIID.
Every property owner subject to the proposed assessment within the Hilltop Landscape Maintenance District was mailed an assessment ballot allowing the property owner to vote on whether to ratify the District. A public notice describing the total assessment, the individual property owner's assessment, the duration of the assessment, the reason for the assessment and the basis upon which the assessment was calculated accompanied the ballots.
A Public Hearing was held on June 9, 1998, and the City Council found that the property owner ballots returned which were cast in favor of the assessment exceeded the property owner ballots cast against the levy of the assessment. Therefore, the City Council approved the Engineer's Report including the annexation of the additional lands, and authorized the City's Finance Director to place the assessments on the County tax roll for fiscal year 1998-99 for collection.
For fiscal year 1999-00, the City Council approved (Resolution No. 85-99) the levy of the assessments not to exceed the maximum assessment amount adjusted for the change in the CPI following the mailing of a notice to each property owner. This report, as required by Section 12.60.240 of the Richmond Municipal Code, sets forth the proposed assessments for each parcel within the Hilltop Landscape Maintenance District for fiscal year 2014/2015 based upon the summary cost estimate shown below. The proposed assessments, as shown herein, do not exceed the maximum assessment amount approved by the property owners adjusted for the change in the CPI. Following the submittal of this report, a notice will be sent to each property owner as required by Section 12.60.250 of the Code.
This District was formed to establish and provide for the improvements that enhance the presentation of the surrounding properties and developments. These improvements will directly benefit the parcels to be assessed within the District. The assessments and method of apportionment is based on the premise that the assessments will be used to construct and install landscape and lighting improvements within the existing Hilltop Landscape Maintenance District as well as provide for the annual maintenance of those improvements, and the assessment revenues generated by District will be used solely for such purposes.
To learn more about Article XIIID of the California Constitution, please go to: http://www.leginfo.ca.gov/.const/.article_13D
To learn more about the Richmond Municipal Codes, please go to: https://library.municode.com/index.aspx?clientId=16579