New county treasurer to collect back taxes
summit daily news
Summit County, CO Colorado
SUMMIT COUNTY ” There may be as many as 170 delinquent local taxpayers getting property tax notices in the mail this week, County Treasurer Bill Wallace said, indicating that he’s prepared to crack down and collect up to $95,000 in back taxes.
The tax Wallace referred to is on property associated with business and rental units in Summit County. The county collects that tax from about 4,000 people total, Wallace said.
“There are about 170 that have never been collected. I don’t know why, but it just doesn’t seem right,” said Wallace, who won election to the Treasurer’s seat last November. “That $95,000 may not seem like a lot, but stretch it out over 10 years and it adds up,” he said, explaining that the bulk of the money goes to the school district and special districts.
“It’s the principle of it as much as the money,” Wallace said. He doesn’t think it’s fair that there are nearly 4,000 people who pay, while a scant few get away without contributing their share.
He acknowledged that some of the delinquent accounts could be due to inaccurate record-keeping. In some cases, if a business is sold and the property converted to non-business use, the new owner might just ignore the tax notice.
But Wallace said property owners have the responsibility of ensuring that the county has accurate information. He plans to follow up on the notices with phone calls, seeking to collect by the end of March. Some of the delinquent taxpayers owe thousands of dollars, he added.
After “repeated” attempts to reach the taxpayers, Wallace said a last-resort scenario would be to work with the Sheriff’s office and sell the property at auction.
Bob Berwyn can be reached at (970) 331-5996, or at firstname.lastname@example.org.
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