County looks for tax bills with two weeks left to pay


By Justin Wier

jwier@vindy.com

YOUNGSTOWN

Real-estate taxes for the first half of 2017 are due two weeks from today in Mahoning County, but as of Thursday, many in the county – including Commissioner Anthony Traficanti – had yet to receive their bills.

“I’m getting a little nervous because usually I would have already had my tax bill,” Traficanti said.

Traficanti asked county Treasurer Dan Yemma about the bills at Thursday’s commissioners meeting.

Yemma assured property owners tax bills are on the way.

“The tax bills are going out as we speak,” Yemma said. “They should be hitting mailboxes any minute.”

The Ohio Revised Code requires treasurers to prepare and mail tax bills immediately upon receipt of tax duplicates from the auditor and no fewer than 20 days before the last date on which the taxes may be paid without penalty.

The county auditor’s office notified the treasurer it certified real-estate taxes for tax year 2017 on Jan. 16.

With a March 9 deadline, tax bills should have been mailed by Feb. 17.

“I usually try to go three to four [weeks prior to the deadline],” Yemma said. “I guess we are a little bit under that.”

A third-party vendor, United Mail LLC of Louisville, Ky., mails the county’s tax bills, and the county has contracted with United the last three years.

“There’s no real issue or problem; they will be arriving soon,” he said.

According to Vindicator files, this is not the first year the treasurer’s office has missed its deadline.

Last year, the office issued a news release Feb. 25 which said the bills were in the mail, 13 days before the deadline of March 10.

In 2016, the news release went out Feb. 19, 13 days before the deadline of March 4.

In 2015, bills went out on Feb. 19, according to that year’s news release. The deadline was 15 days later on March 6.

The Vindicator has yet to receive a news release this year.

The statute, however, does not excuse a failure to pay taxes by the deadline if the bills have not been mailed at the appropriate time.

An exception exists if the negligence or error of the county auditor or treasurer in the performance of a statutory duty prevented the taxpayer from making timely payment.

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