Nevada City, CA – Owners of 142 North San Juan parcels approved an annual approximately $130-per-parcel tax to support a proposed fire suppression system, according to ballot results announced at today’s Board of Supervisors meeting.

Proposed North San Juan Fire Suppression System Map
Proposed North San Juan Fire Suppression System Map

The $3 million project involves the construction of a 330,000-gallon water storage tank near the North San Juan United Methodist Church, about 4,200 feet of water mains and 10 fire hydrants in the commercial core of North San Juan. The goal is to provide reliable fire water storage and a distribution system for commercial and residential use in the area.

“This project has been many years in the making. I’m excited to see it supported by the community to provide more resources for fire protection and preserve North San Juan’s historic buildings for years to come,” said Supervisor Sue Hoek who represents the San Juan Ridge.

Fifty-seven percent of voters approved forming a County Service Area to create the funding mechanism for maintenance of the system. Operation and maintenance of the system is expected to cost about $18,172 per year. The County will own and maintain the fire suppression system while the North San Juan Fire Protection District will operate it.

“If there’s a large wildfire in the area, it will give us enough water to help protect the homes in the area,” said North San Juan Fire Chief Tom Browning about the project at a Board of Supervisors meeting in May.

The new tax will go into effect after the completion of the project, tentatively scheduled in 2026. The ballots were mailed to the property owners May 24, 2024. The tax needed more than 50 percent of voters’ approval to pass.

To move forward, the project needs final approval from the Local Agency Formation Commission as well as additional funding sources. To date, funding sources for only $1.4 million of the $3 million needed to build the fire suppression system have been identified. County staff plan to apply for the remaining $1.6M in grant funds by the beginning of 2025.