TAX COLLECTIONS BEGIN
December 29, 2011
/ Amanda McKay 12 29 11
Area residents have the rest of
Thursday (Dec. 29), Friday ( Dec. 30), and Saturday ( Dec. 31), to pay their taxes without penalty. The collectors
office in the Livingston County Courthouse will be open today until 4:30,
Friday from 8:30 a.m. until 4:30 p.m. and again on Saturday from 8:30 a.m.
to 12 p.m. Those coming in on Saturday will need to use the east or the
C-T, November 3, 2011...
Tax statements mailed this week surprised some property owners because
they either had forgotten or were unaware that this year's tax bills - for
both the city of Chillicothe and Livingston County - were being handled
solely through the courthouse. Nonetheless, taxpayers started making their way to the
collector's office in the Livingston County Courthouse on Tuesday to pay their taxes.
"It seems we always have a big rush the first
week and then it slows down," said Collector Martha Peery. Her
office mailed around 11,500 statements on Monday (approximately 7,000
for real estate and 4,500 for personal property). Those owning real
estate in Livingston County are being billed a total of $7,614,745.12.
Personal property tax bills amount to $2,577,221.08. These amounts
include not only county taxes, but also the taxes that are to be
collected for all cities within Livingston County, except Mooresville,
which still collects its own taxes. This is the first year that there was
a consolidation of tax bills for those who own property within the
cities of Chillicothe and Ludlow. It is the third year for the county to collect
Wheeling's taxes and the second year for Chula.
The consolidation provides a convenience to property
owners because their tax bill encompasses that which is owed to the city, as well as the
county. Prior to this change, taxpayers within Chillicothe had to remit
their city taxes to City Hall and pay their county taxes at the courthouse. The downside, perhaps, for taxpayers is
that instead of possibly staggering the same dollar amount over two payments - one to the
city and one to the county - taxpayers this year will be making one
larger payment at a centralized location.
As for the consolidation, Peery said Wednesday that some of the taxpayers
remembered that the county would be collecting the city's taxes, but
others had forgotten about the change.
Although the county does charge participating cities 2 percent of their
collections in order to provide the service, the driving force behind
consolidating the tax bills was to save the cities money. The Chillicothe
City Council had talked about the consolidation for several months before
entering into a contract last fall with the county for the county to
collect city taxes. The city also anticipated that it would realize
greater tax collections because all personal property taxes - not just
county personal property taxes - would have to be paid in order to renew
vehicle licenses. The largest savings is found in the virtual elimination
of the city treasurer's position, a position for which the council set a
$1 a year salary last year.
Taxpayers must pay their taxes by Dec. 31, or be assessed a penalty
amounting to 13.25 percent of their tax bill for the first month late,
then an additional 2 percent for each month after that. Taxpayers have
the option of paying their bills using credit or debit cards. They must
either pay in person or over the phone if using a credit card (Discover,
Visa and Master Card accepted) or a debit card. A 3.9 percent convenience
fee will be charged to the taxpayers if they choose to pay by credit or
The county anticipates collecting $762,256.77 in railroad and utilities
taxes this year.