§ 36.04  POLICE AND FIRE EMERGENCY RESPONSE COST RECOVERY
   (A)   Purpose.  In order to protect the village from extraordinary expenses resulting from the utilization of village resources in response to certain police or fire emergency incidents, this section authorizes the imposition of charges to recover actual costs incurred by the village in responding to such incidents.
   (B)   Definitions.  Unless the context specifically indicates otherwise, the meaning of the terms used in this section shall be as follows:
      ASSESSABLE COSTS.  Those costs for services incurred by the village in connection with a response to a public safety or fire emergency incident, including but not limited to, the actual labor and material costs of the village (including, without limitation, employee wages, fringe benefits, administrative overhead, costs of equipment, costs of equipment operation, costs of materials, costs of transportation, costs of material disposal and costs of contracted labor), whether or not the services are provided by the village or by a third party on behalf of the village; service charges and interest; attorneys’ fees, litigation costs and any costs charges, fines or penalties to the city imposed by any court or state or federal government entities.
      BOMB THREAT.  The verbal or written threat of a bomb or other explosive device that, if discharged as threatened, would violate a federal, state or local law.
      EMERGENCY ASSISTANCE.  Emergency medical, police, fire and civil defense services.
      EXCESSIVE REQUEST FOR EMERGENCY ASSISTANCE.  Any request for emergency assistance made to a particular location or premises, if such location or premises has requested emergency assistance more than five times in the preceding 30 days.
      FALSE ALARM.  Any automated or manual device designed to request or summon emergency assistance, which device is activated intentionally or otherwise, in the absence of an actual need for emergency assistance.  The determination that there was no actual need for emergency assistance shall be made by the most senior person responding to a false alarm.  Provided, however, a FALSE ALARM shall not be deemed to have occurred if it :
         (a)   Was caused by an act of God, i.e., a lightning storm;
         (b)   Originates from a motor vehicle alarm system; or
         (c)   Has not occurred more frequently than three times in a calendar month or four times in a calendar year.
   HAZARDOUS MATERIAL INCIDENT OR EMERGENCY. Any occurrence, incident, activity, accident or emergency where a release of hazardous materials occurs or is reasonably imminent, and where the Fire Chief, or his or her designee, has so declared such activity, accident or emergency a HAZARDOUS MATERIAL INCIDENT OR EMERGENCY.
      HAZARDOUS MATERIALS. Those elements, substances, wastes or byproducts, including but not limited to, combustible liquid, flammable gas, explosives, flammable poisons, organic peroxides, oxidizers, pyrophorics, unstable reactive matter, water-reactive matter, petroleum products, anti-freeze, polychlorinated biphenyls and asbestos, which are or are potentially harmful to the environment or human or animal life, or which pose an unreasonable or imminent risk to life, health or safety of persons or property, or to the ecological balance of the environment, as determined by the Fire Chief or the senior fire official of the city in charge at the scene.
      ILLEGAL FIRE.  A fire set or determined to have been set in a violation of a federal, state or local law, and shall include an arson fire and a fire set in violation of a no burning ban or order.  An ILLEGAL FIRE does not include an unintentional fire or fire caused by an act of God, i.e., a lightning storm.
      MOTOR VEHICLE.  Any self-propelled or towed vehicle designed or used on the public streets, roads and highways to transport passengers or property, which is required to be registered for use upon such public streets, roads and highways and, for the purposes hereof, all trailers or appurtenances attached to any motor vehicle.
      POLICE OR FIRE EMERGENCY INCIDENT.
         (a)   An excessive request for emergency assistance;
         (b)   A false alarm;
         (c)   A hazardous material incident or emergency;
         (d)   An illegal fire;
         (e)   A bomb threat;
         (f)   A threat of harm to oneself or others;
         (g)   A structure demolition; or
         (h)   A utility line failure.
      RELEASE.  Any actual or threatened spilling, leaking, pumping, pouring, emitting, emptying, discharging, injection, leaching, dumping or disposing into the environment, including but not limited to, the air, soil, groundwater and surface water.
      RESPONSIBLE PARTY.  Any individual, firm, corporation, association, partnership, commercial entity, consortium, joint venture, government entity or any other legal entity responsible for a police or fire emergency incident, or any owner, tenant, occupant or party in control of real and personal property from which, onto which, or related to which there is a police or fire emergency incident, and their heirs, estates, successors and assigns.
      STRUCTURE DEMOLITION.  The tearing down of a structure damaged by fire that must, in the opinion of the Fire Chief or his or her designee, be promptly demolished following the fire to protect public safety.
      THREAT OF HARM TO ONESELF OR OTHERS.  The verbal or written threat of physical harm to oneself or another or another’s property that, if carried out, would violate of federal, state or local law.
      UTILITY LINE FAILURE.  The disabling of any transmission or service line, cable, conduit, pipeline, wire or the like used to provide, collect or transport electricity, natural gas, communication or electronic signals (including, but not limited to, telephone, computer, cable television and stereo signals or electronic impulses), water or sanitary or storm sewage, if the owner or party responsible for the maintenance of such utility line does not respond within one hour to a request to repair or correct such failure.
   (C)   Cost recovery authorization and procedure.
      (1)   The village may recover all assessable costs in connection with a police or fire emergency incident from any or all responsible parties, jointly and severally.
      (2)   The Village Manager, or his or her designee, shall determine the total assessable costs and shall consult with the other village personnel involved in responding to a police or fire emergency incident to determine whether to assess any, all or part of such costs against any of the responsible parties.  In making such determination, the following shall be considered:
         (a)   The total assessable costs;
         (b)   The risk the police or fire emergency incident imposed on the village, its residents and their property;
         (c)   Whether there was any injury or damage to person or property;
         (d)   Whether the police or fire emergency incident required evacuation;
         (e)   The extent the police or fire emergency incident required an unusual or extraordinary use of the village personnel and equipment; and
         (f)   Whether there was any damage to the environment.
      (3)   After consideration of the factors in division (C)(2) immediately above, the Village Manager may allocate assessable costs among and between responsible parties, including allocating all or some of such costs jointly and severally against more than one responsible party, regardless of whether the responsible party has other legal liability therefor or is legally at fault.
      (4)   If the Village Manager determines not to assess all or a part of the assessable costs against a responsible party, such determination shall not in any way limit or extinguish the liability of the responsible party to other parties.
   (D)   Billing and collection of assessable costs.
      (1)   After determining to assess assessable costs against the responsible party, the Village Treasurer shall mail an itemized invoice to the responsible party at its last known address. 
      (2)   The invoice shall be due and payable within 30 days of the date of mailing, and any amounts unpaid after such date shall bear the late payment fee equal to 1% per month or fraction thereof that the amount and any previously imposed late payment fee remains unpaid. 
      (3)   If a responsible party shall appeal assessable costs pursuant to division (E), such costs, if upheld, in whole or part, shall be due and payable 30 days from the date of determination of the appeal, and any late payment fees shall apply thereafter.
   (E)   Procedure for appealing assessable costs.
      (1)   Any responsible party who receives an invoice for assessable costs shall have an opportunity to meet with the Village Manager, or his or her designee, to request a modification of assessable costs.
      (2)   The responsible party shall request in writing such meeting within seven calendar days of the date of the invoice assessing the assessable costs.
      (3)   If, after meeting with the Village Manager or his or her designee, the responsible party is still not satisfied, he or she may request an opportunity to appear before the Village Council to further request a modification of assessable costs.  A responsible party who desires to appear before the Village Council:
         (a)   Must first meet with the Village Manager or his or her designee as provided above; and
         (b)   Shall file a written request to appear before the Village Council with the Village Clerk within seven calendar days of the date of the meeting with the Village Manager.
      (4)   Upon receipt of such request, the Village Clerk will place the responsible party on the agenda of the next regularly scheduled Village Council meeting, which meeting is at least 14 calendar days after the date on which the responsible party files the request to appear.
         (a)   Any filed request to appear shall specifically identify and explain all reasons why the responsible party believes the assessed costs should be modified.
         (b)   Any reasons, basis or argument for modification of assessable costs not set forth in the request to appear shall be deemed waived by the responsible party.
         (c)   Failure to timely file a written request to appear shall constitute a waiver of the responsible party’s right to appear before the Village Council, and shall further constitute the responsible party’s agreement to pay the assessable costs invoiced.
      (5)   After a responsible party has been given an opportunity to appear before the Village Council, the Village Manager shall promptly determine whether to confirm, modify or void the payment of assessable costs invoiced.
   (F)   Assessable costs a lien upon property.
      (1)   Assessable costs assessed against a responsible party not paid when due, including late payment fees, shall constitute a lien upon the real property of the responsible party in the village, from which, upon which or related to which the police or fire emergency incident occurred.
      (2)   The lien shall be of the same character and effect as the lien created by the Village Charter for city real property taxes, and shall include accrued interest and penalties.
      (3)   Prior to March 1 of each year, the Village Treasurer shall certify to the Village Assessor the fact that such assessable costs are delinquent and unpaid.
      (4)   The Village Assessor shall then enter the delinquent amount on the next general ad valorem tax roll as a charge against the affected property, and the lien thereon shall be enforced in the same manner as provided and allowed by law for delinquent and unpaid real property taxes.
   (G)   Other remedies.  In addition to the remedy set forth above in this section, the village shall be entitled to pursue any other remedy or may institute any appropriate action or proceeding in a court of competent jurisdiction, as permitted by law, to collect assessable costs from a responsible party.
   (H)   No limitation of liability.  The recovery of assessable costs pursuant hereto does not limit the liability of a responsible party under applicable local, state or federal law.
(Ord. 12-01, passed 3-5-2012)