As of Dec. 31, 2011, Lacey Township had $488,918.03 in outstanding taxes.
“Does it mean that we’re bad? No,” Township Administrator Veronica Laureigh said. “More than 99 percent is collected. Our collection rate still remains very stable.”
Uncollected taxes range anywhere from just more than $1 to more than $20,000 for a single property or multiple properties.
The property owner with the most in uncollected taxes is Edrich Corporation located at 701 S. Main St. The company owes $24,268.61.
Taxpayers may decide not to pay their taxes for a variety of reasons, Laureigh said. But the shortfall is accounted for in the budget each year under the Reserve for Uncollected Taxes.
Interest accrues daily on uncollected taxes and if the number exceeds $10,000, there is a 6 percent penalty, Sharon Sulecki of the Tax Collectors Office said.
Some taxpayers have an escrow account for taxes with mortgage companies. In many cases, those mortgage companies failed to pay the taxes for “some reason,” Sulecki said. There could have been a default, the home is foreclosed or there was a breach in the escrow agreement.
Once uncollected taxes are accounted for the properties are put on the lien sale on Friday, Feb. 3, Laureigh said.
The property is auctioned off at a specific rate of interest, starting at 18 percent, Sulecki said. Lien holders bid down to zero or a premium.
“A lien is essentially a mortgage,” she said. “Someone is lending you the money to pay the taxes on your property.”
If no one bids on the property, the lien goes to the township, she said. If someone bids, they get that rate of interest for two years before they can proceed with a foreclosure.
The municipality is able to start a foreclosure six months after the date of the sale as long as some part of the property is 21 months delinquent, Sulecki said.
Below is a list of the top 10 taxpayers who have failed to pay their taxes organized by owner name, property location and principal due:
- Edrich Corp., South Main Street, owes the most taxes for a single property at $24,268.61.
- Parker Associates, Inc. owns 14 pieces of property in Lacey totaling $21,343.23.
- Harbor Equities, LLC C/O Eastport, for three properties in Lacey totaling $14,754.65.
- Jennifer Cavalier, owns 11 properties in Lacey totaling $12,436.39.
- Walter Holm and Northeast Passage Inc., owner of 12 properties in Lacey totaling $10,395.17.
- David C. Smith, Joan G. and Gale W. Jr., Paradise Point Way, $9,788.72.
- Robert S. Fay and Sharon W., Wells Mills Road, $9,582.71.
- Corelogic for ten properties in Lacey at a total of $9,402.92.
- Bank of America for six homes in Lacey totaling $7,887.03.
- Anthony J. Griffin III, Skimmer Court, for a total of $7,572.