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Are there any disadvantages to forming a Zone of Benefit or Permanent Road Division?
The single disadvantage is an increase in cost. Under the Zone of Benefit or Permanent Road Division program, a portion of the road maintenance assessment or special tax is used to pay County staff for the administration of the Zone or Division. Once a Zone or Division is established this cost runs about 10% per year of the total annual assessment or special tax. A fairly large initial cost is involved in the formation of the Zone for the Zone or Division mapping and filing fees required by the State Board of Equalization. Another added cost is incurred because the County maintenance is paying "prevailing wage" (Union scale). Since most contractors do not usually pay their workers prevailing wage, private persons or private road maintenance associations can usually hire a contractor at a lower rate than the County can. The increase in cost to property owners who pay their share may be partially or completely offset by the County's ability to insure that all property owners within a Zone or Division pay their share in cases where some owners do not make voluntary contributions to the road maintenance.