SAVANNAH, Ga. — Georgia’s oldest city is preparing to charge homeowners a new fee to pay for firefighting services.

City officials in Savannah approved the fire fee last year and the $256 annual charge to homeowners is slated to show up on property tax bills in September. Money raised by the fee can only be used to fund fire services, and the city is rolling back property taxes by roughly $5 million to help offset the extra cost to homeowners.

Local news outlets report City Hall is giving residents a chance to shave up to 20 percent — about $50 — off their fire fees. To earn the discounts, homeowners must show they have working smoke detectors and fire extinguishers, develop a fire evacuation plan and request a home fire safety survey.