Frequently Asked Questions
What is a Fire District?
The State of Arizona created the ability to form Special Taxing Districts, like Fire Districts, so that Arizona residents unable to receive fire and medical services due to their area’s location, size, and/or lack of government support (generally rural areas) are able to receive the services. The formation of a Fire District creates a funding mechanism (secondary property tax) to pay for the necessary services by placing the responsibility on those who benefit from that service. (A.R.S. Title 48)
CAFMA’s two Districts are each governed by a five-member board elected at large by the voters. Board members are elected to alternating four-year terms so at least two are elected every two years. The Board recommends a tax rate, approves the budget, establishes policy, and hires the Fire Chief. Learn more about the Boards and Board meetings here.
What is the difference between a Fire District and a Fire Department?
There are currently 35 municipal Fire Departments and 144 Fire Districts in the State of Arizona. Here’s a little bit about both:
Fire Departments fall under municipal government and generally work within the city limits of a municipality. Fire Departments can be funded through a City’s sales taxes, state shared revenues, and some are also funded through property taxes. Cities also have the capability of adding an additional sales tax to a ballot. Fire Departments share the cost of services like Finance, Human Resources, Legal, Insurance, and more with other municipal departments like law enforcement, water, building etc.
Fire Districts are political subdivisions of the State of Arizona, independent of municipal or county government, created to serve areas unable to receive fire and medical services due to their area’s location, size, and/or lack of government support (generally rural areas). In contrast to municipal Fire Departments, Fire Districts don’t have access to sales taxes and state shared revenues; Districts are funded through one primary source: a secondary property tax. Unlike cities or municipalities, Fire Districts do not receive funding from Highway User Fund (HURF), Transaction Privilege Tax/Sales Tax (State or Local), Vehicle License Tax (VLT) or Income Tax.
How did Prop 117 affect Fire District funding?
Fire Districts are funded though one primary source: property taxes. Though some areas, like the Quad Cities, are experiencing exponential growth, Districts aren’t able to capture the significant increase in property values, as Prop 117 capped Fire Districts at 5% of the Limited Property Value. The Limited Value (LV) doesn’t change at a rate commensurate with the Full Cash Value of a property, and the LV never resets no matter how much the property is worth, or the amount at which the property sells.
Example: A $200,000 house built in 2013 was set at a LV of $160,000. That same house just sold for $600,000, but because the value isn’t reset upon the sale of the property, the property taxes on the home are still set at a LV associated with the initial $200,000 full market value.
What services are provided?
CAFMA provides fire and emergency medical services by career firefighters and State Certified EMTs and Paramedics. CAFMA has a full complement of fire, medical, and rescue equipment, and also provides fire inspection and public education programs.
How do I know if my property is within CAFMA's jurisdiction?
Our Administrative Team is happy to help you discern if you fall within CAFMA boundaries. Please call (928) 772-7711 during regular business hours.
If your property is within Chino Valley or Central Yavapai Fire District, you will see that reflected on your property tax bill.
I'm not in-District but I'd like fire and medical protection from CAFMA. Is that possible?
If a property is contiguous to our current District border, then the parcel(s) may be annexed into the District; this is essentially a permanent solution and you would see the cost reflected on your property tax bill post-annexation. If the property does not border our District, you may be eligible for a Fire Protection Agreement (FPA), an annual contract with CAFMA’s Administration Office wherein you receive the same services as you would receive if you were already in-District, for the same cost (plus a $50.00 Admin Fee) as if you were already in-District.
Please contact our Administrative Team at (928) 772-7711 to determine if your property is eligible for annexation or a FPA.
What is the FDAT and why do I see it on my property tax bill?
The Fire District Assistance Tax (FDAT) helps ensure that you will receive rescue services on any highway, street, or roadway outside of the established jurisdictional boundaries of a Fire District in the State of Arizona.
Arizona has 144 Fire Districts that serve a majority of the state outside of major metropolitan areas. When you’re traveling across our state you are driving in and out of areas that have established emergency response services. FDAT is meant to provide some level of financial support to Fire Districts who respond outside their established boundaries into areas where there would otherwise be no one to respond. This financial support is for rescue services only.
Does being in a Fire District affect my property insurance rate?
While insurance rates vary, you may realize a decrease in your property insurance premiums when you annex into the District, or have a Fire Protection Agreement (FPA) with our Administration Office, especially if you currently do not have fire protection. Questions? Call (928) 772-7711 during regular business hours.
How do I get a burn permit?
Please visit yavapaiburnpermits.com to create an account, get a burn permit, check to see if it is a burn day, and to start and stop all of your burns.
The website and burn permit program belong to, and are operated by, the Prescott Regional Communications Center (PRCC)/City of Prescott. Due to recent changes to the system, CAFMA is currently unable to assist with the burn permit process. If you require assistance, please contact Non-Emergency Dispatch: (928) 445-5357.
When does the Fire Board meet?
The CAFMA Board holds regular Board meetings on the fourth Monday of each month. The Chino Valley and Central Yavapai Fire District Boards meet quarterly. Please see our Board Meeting Schedule and Locations for additional information.
Why do I see fire engines driving around town?
CAFMA has 10 full-time staffed fire stations. Four of our stations are in the Town of Prescott Valley, one is in Dewey, one in Prescott, one on the Outer Loop Road, two in Chino Valley, and one in Paulden. Learn more by clicking here! There are several reasons that fire engines may be driving without lights and sirens and appear to be “just driving around”.
- The engine may be returning to quarters after responding to an emergency call or responding to a “non-emergency” call, i.e. assisting an invalid back to bed.
- The engine may be responding to a call where they were requested to respond with no lights and sirens.
- The firefighters may be responding to a ‘move-up’. A move-up is a situation where a fire engine relocates to provide coverage for another station or unit that is responding to an emergency.
- Firefighters may be conducting driver training or area orientation.
- Firefighters may also be servicing/testing fire hydrants.
- Firefighters may have conducted a training exercise at the Central Arizona Regional Training Academy (CARTA), our training center, or at a location away from the fire station. Example: Mock disaster drill held at the local high school.
Firefighters also conduct business inspections while on duty. Business inspections help reduce the potential for fires and protect businesses in our community as well as enable firefighters to become familiar with the entrances and exits of public buildings and make sure commercial properties are adhering to safety practices that reduce the potential for fires.
Why did I see a fire engine at the grocery store?
Schedule a ride-along with a fire crew?
You must be at least 18 years of age. You may ride with the fire crew between 9:00 a.m. and 5:00 p.m. and only once per year. Contact the Administration Office at (928)772-7711.
Schedule a station tour?
The Central Arizona Fire & Medical Authority offers tours of each of our 10 staffed fire stations.
For the location of our Stations go to the Stations and Apparatus page.
To schedule a tour, please contact Fire Prevention at (928) 772-7711.
Get a copy of an EMS, fire or incident report?
EMS reports are not public record and this information is protected per HIPAA regulations. EMS reports are provided free of charge to the patient and, with a valid HIPAA authorization signed by the patient any other individual involved in the incident. Others may purchase the EMS report with a valid HIPAA authorization signed by the patient.
Incident reports are public record.
Fire Investigation reports are public information with some restrictions. Additional fees may be assessed for Fire Investigation Reports and/or pictures. To obtain copies of EMS / Fire incident reports click on the first link below. For all other requests for public records, click on the second link. Complete the request form and mail or bring it in person to the address below.
EMS / FIRE INCIDENT REQUEST FORM
Central Arizona Fire & Medical Authority
Custodian of Records
8603 E Eastridge Dr
Prescott Valley, AZ 86314
Find out the closest fire station for my insurance company?
Contact the Administrative Office at (928) 772-7711.
Enroll in a CPR class?
Registrer and pay on our website HERE. For any questions Contact the Administrative Office at (928) 772-7711.
Check my smoke detector?
Each smoke detector has a test button, usually in the center of the detector. Press the test button and hold for a few seconds. If it is working correctly, the alarm will sound and will automatically stop after a few more seconds.
GET IN TOUCH WITH US
CENTRAL ARIZONA FIRE & MEDICAL AUTHORITY
8603 E. Eastridge Drive
Prescott Valley, AZ
Mon – Thursday
7:00 a.m to 5:00 p.m.