(a) Periodically, it becomes necessary to survey and evaluate the existing fee structure of non tax revenues accruing to the ASG’s general fund. We do not know when was the last time this was done. Nonetheless, the office of program planning and budget is conducting a study in order to compile a catalog of general fund non tax revenues and to examine each fee from the point of appropriateness and adequacy.

(b) There are no clear-cut criteria that can serve to determine whether an activity should be appropriately financed from specially levied fees or from general tax revenues. If it is determined that the individual benefitting from the service (rather than the general taxpayer) should pay for the service, the question of how much to charge the individual (whether the fee is equitable and produces adequate revenues) remains to be answered and again must depend on a value judgment.

(c) The following are some generally stated guidelines and criteria which can be used in evaluating the appropriateness as well as the adequacy of fees:

(1) Where governmental services are provided to private individuals and the receipt of such services accrues to the economic advantage of the individual, fees should at least cover the cost providing such services.

(2) Where government provides services that are similar to or competitive with those provided by private industry, fees should equal those charged by private industry . (3) Where government provides services that are intended primarily for the protection and promotion of private industry , fees should at least cover the cost of providing such services.

(4) Revenues from fees may exceed the cost of providing the service if the level of the fees is imposed to maintain comparability with fees levied for other similar services, or if the level of the fees is reasonably commensurate with the value of the services rendered, or if the level of fees is deemed to be reasonable and nonconfiscatory .

(5) Revenues from fees need not provide the full cost of the service, if the potential long-term gain to the public justifies such action.

(6) As much as possible, fees for similar services should be at uniform levels.

(7) Fees imposed on services that are required primarily for the protection of the public should give sufficient consideration to the fact that it is the presence of these activities that creates the need for such protection.

History: Rule 3-83, eff 4 Apr 83, § E.4 (part).