Published: Sep 04, 2014 7:48 AM EDT
Updated: Sep 04, 2014 6:02 PM EDT

CAPE CORAL, Fla.- Cape Coral property owners have until close of business on Thursday, September 4 to pay their FY 2014 fire services assessment.

The City mailed the bills to all property owners earlier this year. Any unpaid assessments will be added to the FY 2015 property tax bill for collection. 

There is also a special city council meeting and public hearing tonight to discuss next year's fee as part of the budget. The city says the estimated fire protection assessed cost for fiscal year 2014-2015 is about $20 million. Tonight's meeting is the first of two public hearings on the budget.

The city has already collected about $10 million this year, but that money is sitting untouched in a separate account right now. The issue is tied up in the state Supreme Court because some don't believe the fee is legal. The city won't spend any of your money until that case is resolved.

Cape Coral has also added the fire assessment fee to its hardship program for people who can't afford to pay.