Flexibility to Help Residents Avoid Tax Sale Supported by Counties

This week, MACo Legislative Director Kevin Kinnally testified before the House Ways and Means Committee in support of HB 1196 – Tax Sales – Alternative Collection Programs. This bill would grant counties broad discretion to establish criteria for withholding properties from tax sale, which could help minimize tax collection costs, assist with the payment of overdue taxes, and ultimately allow homeowners to remain in their homes.

From the MACo testimony

The tax sale process, or more specifically the potential for a property to go to tax sale, presents a much-needed tool of last resort to ensure that property owners remit payment for their fair share of taxes and charges connected to public services. Of course, no jurisdiction wants to send any property to tax sale if it can be avoided. Under current law, local governments may withhold from tax sale a dwelling owned by a low-income homeowner, at least 65 years old, or disabled if the homeowner meets specified eligibility criteria. HB 1196 would allow local governments to withhold from tax sale properties that meet objective criteria established by local law or properties enrolled in a payment program established by local ordinance. In addition, the bill would authorize local governments to cancel or postpone a tax sale during a state of emergency.

More on MACo’s Advocacy:

Follow MACo’s advocacy efforts during the 2022 legislative session on MACo’s Legislative Tracking Database
Learn more about MACo’s 2022 Legislative Initiatives
Read more General Assembly News on MACo’s Conduit Street blog

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