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Property tax collections up
Those who pay late face penalties
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Forsyth County News

Forsyth County property owners have topped last year’s percentage of those paying their taxes on time.

Tax Commissioner Matthew Ledbetter said Tuesday that about 90 percent of property taxes were paid by the Nov. 15 due date. That was an increase of about 2.5 percent from last year.

"We’d like to thank the citizens of Forsyth County for that number," Ledbetter said. "That’s something we can all be proud of."

Of about $200 million billed, more than $179 million was collected by the due date, on which a "flood" of payments came in, he said.

Residents had another option to pay those bills this year, with the opening of a tax drive-through in October at the main office on Tribble Gap Road.

Nearly one-third of the collections were paid at a drive-up window, Ledbetter said.

"It was an overwhelming success," he said. "Due to the weather being bad, that helped [increase those numbers] a lot. That’s what it’s there for, though."

For those who haven’t yet paid this year’s taxes, penalties have kicked in and will continue to accumulate.

The county assesses a 1 percent interest charge on the day after the due date, and once again each month the bill goes unpaid.

Per the state, a 10 percent penalty is assessed each year a bill is late on Feb. 15.

"That’s what drives our collections over 100 percent," Ledbetter said. "It’s because we’ll get all the money collected, but you’ve got those bills that stay out there remaining that come in later, but you get that 1 percent [interest]."

Paying on time, aside from saving taxpayers money, helps the county government and school system run efficiently and keep the millage rate down, he said.