revenue caused by inflation and new construction, is commonly known as the “Headlee
Rollback” (Anderson, 1991).
Harvey (1999) states “The capping of assessments will have long term funding
impacts on Michigan local governments, the effects of which will be cumulative and long
term in nature. Of significant concern to local governments is the capping of individual
assessments and the disparate property tax base growth that will lead to a widening gap
between communities” (p.1). Once millage rates are rolled back due to Headlee, a new
authorized rate is established. To recapture the lost millage, a local government must seek
voter approval and identify the recapture as a new tax levy. The restrictions placed on
property tax revenues as a result of the Headlee Amendment have forced local governments to
develop new strategies to balance budgets (Harvey, 1999).
The effect of the Headlee Amendment has been a decrease (rollback) in millage rates
in Harrison Township. This rollback has resulted in decreases in revenue generated by
property taxes since 1996 (J. P. Shore, Harrison Township Controller, personal
communication, July 28, 1999).
Research Question 3. What funding alternatives have other departments used to fund
fire and emergency medical services? Fire Departments have a variety of sources from which
they derive revenues to fund fire and emergency medical services. Methods of funding can be
divided into two broad categories: Tax based and Non-tax based.
Tax based funding can be further divided into two categories: General and Narrow.
General taxes are described as compulsory payments used to finance general government
programs. Narrow taxes are those taxes that are earmarked for a particular expenditure
category (Berman, 1997).