Policy spells out tax sale criteria

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BEACON FALLS — The town has had a long-standing procedure of allowing delinquent taxpayers to pay their debt off in monthly payments. Tax Collector Mary Anne Holloway has now put it in writing.

Holloway presented a new tax policy criteria for tax sales of properties owned by residents who are delinquent on their real estate, sewer, or water bills to the Board of Selectmen on Oct. 16.

“I felt there was a need now to come up with some type of policy and … identify people that are really just not paying,” Holloway said.

Holloway said her department’s motto is “Beacon Falls taxpayers keep their town going and growing,” and this policy is a way of helping both the town and the residents.

The policy, which is aimed at residents who are in arrears for two years or more and are not currently on a monthly payment plan, aims to put people on a monthly plan to pay off their debt.

The monthly payment plan is to prevent a resident’s property from going to a tax auction.

“It is the tax collector’s responsibility to oversee that every taxpayer lives up to their responsibility for keeping their taxes paid in a timely manner. The town realizes the each of us at various times cannot always do this; therefore, I have set up a monthly payment plan to help, and have created a policy for tax sales on delinquent real estate and sewer [and] water bills which will ensure that every taxpayer is treated equally and fairly,” Holloways wrote on the policy.

According to the policy residents must send payments into the town on a scheduled monthly basis. If the resident does not adhere to the set schedule more than two times in a 12-month period the agreement will be considered broken.

The resident will be subject to yearly reviews to ensure payment is sufficient to reduce the principle delinquent taxes, according to the policy.

If a resident’s account has already been turned over to the state marshal’s office, the resident must send both the monthly payment and the legal fees directly to the state marshal, the policy states.

Holloway said the monthly payment plan criteria will help the town recuperate back taxes it is owed, and help residents keep their home.

“My sincere desire is not to bring homes to a tax sale if at all possible. I truly hope that people just get on a monthly payment plan,” Holloway said.

According to First Selectman Christopher Bielik the tax collector’s office is allowed to create policies such as this and does not need approval from the board.