2018 Owner Notification Mailer

BOARD OF FIRE COMMISSIONERS
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DELIA IBARRA
PRESIDENT
 
ANDREW GLAZIER
VICE PRESIDENT
 
JIMMY H. HARA, M.D.
REBECCA NINBURG
JIMMIE WOODS -GRAY
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LETICIA GOMEZ
EXECUTIVE ASSISTANT II
CITY OF LOS ANGELES
CALIFORNIA
ERIC GARCETTI
MAYOR
FIRE DEPARTMENT
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RALPH M. TERRAZAS
FIRE CHIEF
 
BRUSH CLEARANCE UNIT
6262 VAN NUYS BLVD. #451
VAN NUYS, CA 91401
(800) 994-4444
Phone Hours: 8:00 a.m to 11:00 a.m
www.lafd.org/brush
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 OWNER NOTIFICATION

IMPORTANT PROCEDURAL CHANGES - MUST READ
THIS NOTICE IS INFORMATIONAL ONLY 

AN EQUAL EMPLOYMENT OPPORTUNITY-AFFIRMATIVE ACTION EMPLOYER
The LAFD provides reasonable accommodations to assure equal access to its programs, services and facilities.  For more information call (800) 994-4444
 
 
March 1, 2018                                     PIN: XXXXXX
 
Dear Property Owner,     
The Los Angeles Fire Department provides a thorough and comprehensive brush program in order to protect lives and property for those who live and enjoy the hillside communities within the City of Los Angeles.  Section 57.322.2 of the Los Angeles Municipal Code and Ordinance No. 172449 adopted by the Los Angeles City Council and approved by the Mayor, provides the Fire Department the authority to collect a fee for inspection of properties located in the Very High Fire Hazard Severity Zone (VHFHSZ).
 
A $28 Inspection fee has been instituted to recover the cost associated with the initial brush inspection. The inspection is conducted by a team of Fire Inspectors during the months of May through June to identify hazards. Property owners that are not in compliance with the Brush Clearance Ordinance shall be issued a Notice(s) of Noncompliance, and billed $28 per parcel for the inspection.  Inspection billing will begin during the month of July 2018 and must be paid by the date specified on the bill. Failure to submit payment will result in assessment of a penalty.
 
The Ordinance provides an opportunity for the property owner to avoid the $28 inspection fee by maintaining their property in accordance with the provisions set forth in L.A.M.C Section 57.322, et seq. (see page 3). In order to avoid assessment of an inspection fee, brush clearance shall be conducted and complete compliance is required as defined in L.A.M.C Section 57.322 by April 30, 2018. If compliance is not complete by April 30, 2018 Property owners are subject to the $28.00 fee if their property fails the inspection.
 
The safety of your home can be significantly increased with proper brush clearance, advanced planning, and preparation. Brush clearance is a year-round responsibility. Thank you for your continued support and cooperation. For questions or concerns, please contact the Brush Clearance Unit via phone at (800) 994-4444 between the hours of 8:00 a.m and 11:00 a.m, email us at lafdbrush@lacity.org or visit our website at www.lafd.org/brush
 
Kristin M. Crowley
Fire Marshal

 

AFFIDAVITS HAVE BEEN DISCONTINUED

Take the following steps to exempt your parcel(s) from the 
2018 $28 Inspection Fee.
 
 
Step 1. Conduct a thorough and comprehensive inspection of your property.
 
Step 2. Remove from the property any hazardous refuse or hazardous vegetation, as defined in L.A.M.C. Section 57.322 (See page 3 for minimum requirements) by April 30, 2018
 
It is not necessary to notify the Fire Department after completing Steps 1 and 2.  The Fire Department will automatically conduct the initial inspection of your parcel(s) beginning  May 1, 2018 through June 30, 2018
 

NO FEE IF BRUSH CLEARANCE IS COMPLIANT BY APRIL 30, 2018

 
IF A PROPERTY FAILS THE INITIAL INSPECTION, THE FEE SCHEDULE FOR NONCOMPLIANCE IS AS FOLLOWS
 
- INITIAL INSPECTION COMPLIANT (PASSED) NO FEE IS ASSESSED
- INITIAL INSPECTION (FAIL) FEE $28
 
ALL PARCELS RECEIVING A FAILED INITIAL INSPECTION WILL RECEIVE A RE-INSPECTION
 
- COMPLIANT ON REINSPECTION (PASSED) – NO ADDITIONAL FEES ($28.00 ASSESSED FOR INITIAL ONLY)
- NON COMPLIANT RE-INSPECTION (FAIL) FEE $432 
- RED TAG and CONTRACTING ADMINISTRATIVE FEE $1304 + CONTRACTOR’S PRICE
 
Each parcel located in the VHFHSZ is subject to the $28 Initial Inspection Fee.
The Fire Department is the final authority in determining compliance
 
 

Check The Status of Your Parcel any time after May 1, 2018 by logging onto vms3.lafd.org.  Simply enter your APN in the “Check APN Status” box. If your property has not yet been inspected, the Status Box will indicate “N/A”. If your property failed the Initial Inspection, expect to see a notice in the mail within 7-10 days of the inspection. If your property passed the Initial Inspection, you will not receive any further correspondence from the LAFD Brush Clearance Unit.

 
To View Secured Information regarding your annual brush inspection, log onto vms3.lafd.org with your registered email/password and the PIN provided or create a new account using the PIN provided. We’ll notify you immediately by email the results of your annual inspection.  Having a registered account, you agree to receive all Brush Clearance Notifications via email from the Los Angeles Fire Department Brush Clearance Unit.  Your PIN is located on page 1 under Owner Notification. 
 
Maintaining Your Property in accordance with L.A.M.C Section 57.322 is due by April 30, 2018 and is a year-round responsibility. To assure continuous compliance, it may be necessary for you to conduct a thorough and comprehensive inspection of your property more than once a year.

 

Go Green. Go Paperless.

One Less Thing To Think About
Log onto vms3.lafd.org to Login or Register a new account. We’ll notify you immediately by email the results of your annual inspection (see page 2 for instructions). By having a Registered account, you agree to receive all notifications via email from the 
Los Angeles Fire Department Brush Clearance Unit
For more information about the Brush Clearance Program and L.A.M.C Section 57.322 visit
vms3.lafd.org or call (800) 994-4444
 
 
Homeless Encampments Are A Public Safety Concern
Please call 311 or go to myla311@lacity.org
to report a homeless encampment in your area.

Brush Notice FAQs

 
Q. Why am I no longer receiving a Self Inspection Affidavit?
A. The Los Angeles Fire Department has decided to discontinue the use of Self Inspection Affidavits. A NEW user-friendly program has been established that continues to promote the protection of lives and property, and allows property owners to exempt their parcel(s) from the Initial Inspection Fee.  Take the following steps to exempt your parcel(s) from the 2018 Initial Inspection Fee:
  1. Conduct a thorough and comprehensive inspection of your property; and
  2. Remove any and all hazardous vegetation and refuse, as defined in L.A.M.C. Section 57.322 by April 30, 2018.
 
Q. What procedures must I complete to ensure I am not assessed any brush clearance fees?
A. Prior to May 1, 2018, compare you native brush and landscape vegetation with information on our website’s (vms3.lafd.org) “Clearance Requirement” tab.  If you are not able to clear your property yourself, hire a professional who can both understand the information and apply it to your property. If you need assistance securing a brush clearance contractor, visit the Brush Unit website at www.lafd.org/brush and click on ‘Brush Clearance Vendor List’. Clean your property as required prior to May 1, 2018  to ensure that you pass the Initial Inspection, avoiding potentially costly Non-Compliance fees.
 
Q. How can I check my property to ensure complete compliance?
A
.  It is the responsibility of every property owner to understand the boundaries of their entire parcel(s). If the property lines of your property are not clear, you can utilize the following websites for assistance:
 
LA County Property Assessment Information System- allows you to identify your parcel on the assessor map using your assessor parcel number (APN) or address. Property line dimensions are also included on this map. 
 
Zimas - allows you to view your parcel in a colored satellite view. The image may not be the most current but can allow you to see landmarks and how they relate to your parcel regarding property lines.
This site has other features that can be useful. For example, to check if your property is in the Zone - open the map of your parcel using your APN or address. In the left hand column, click on the blue line item labeled ‘Additional’. The row, Very High Fire Hazard Severity Zone will read either ‘Yes’ or ‘No’.
 
The Brush Unit’s website www.lafd.org/brush is very informative and can be helpful prior to beginning the brush clearance on your parcel(s).
Satisfactorily complete your annual brush clearance by April 30, 2018 in order to be exempt from the 2018 Initial Inspection Fee of $28.
 
Q. How will I know when my property has been inspected?
A. The Brush Clearance Unit begins Initial Inspections on May 1, 2018 and should be completed by June 30, 2018.
 
Check the status of your parcel anytime after May 1st by logging onto vms3.lafd.org. Simply enter your APN in the “Check APN Status” box. If your property has not yet been inspected, the Status Box will indicate “N/A”. If your property failed the Initial Inspection, expect to see a notice in the mail within 7-10 days. If your property passed the Initial Inspection, you will not receive any correspondence from the LAFD Brush Clearance Unit.
 
To view secured information regarding your annual brush inspection log onto vms3.lafd.org with your registered email/password or create a new account. A registered account qualifies you to receive an automated email notifying you that your Initial Inspection has been completed (in real time).
 
Q. What if I cannot complete the brush clearance on my property by April 30th?
A
. The Brush Clearance Unit begins Initial Inspections on May 1, 2018 and should be completed with all 141,000 Initial Inspections by June 30, 2018. It is not possible to schedule or reschedule your Initial Inspection.  Should the Brush Unit inspect and fail your parcel prior to brush clearance, you should expect to receive a notice of Non-Compliance in the mail within 7-10 days. As set forth in the notice, you will have 15 days to bring your property into compliance. Because the parcel failed the Initial Inspection, you will be assessed an Initial Inspection Fee of $28. An invoice for $28 should be mailed to you mid July- August. 
 
Q. Why am I receiving this mailer?
A
. The Los Angeles City Fire Department has the responsibility of notifying all property owners owning property in the VHFHSZ of the Brush Clearance Program. However, if you would like to Go Green and Go Paperless, register an account with vms3.lafd.org  and agree to receive all notifications from the Brush Clearance Unit via email. A registered account will opt you out of all paper notifications in the future. 
 

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