Tax assessor wants to save taxpayers added costs
By La Prensa Staff
January 31 is the last day to pay your 2012 property taxes without penalty and interest, Bexar County Tax Assessor-Collector, Albert Uresti, has an urgent message for taxpayers: “We want our taxpayers to understand that our goal is keep families in their homes and that my office is here to help. Part of improving customer service is educating our citizens on how they can avoid additional charges on their tax bill by paying their taxes on time,” said Uresti.
Beginning February 1, all unpaid tax accounts will be assessed an additional 7% for penalty and interest, which will continue to increase monthly until the taxes are paid in full. The penalty and interest can go as high as 18% by July, plus, an additional 15-20% attorney collection fee will also be charged on July 1, 2013. These penalties, interest, and fees are required by law (not the Tax Assessor) to be added to property owners’ bills.
“One of our primary goals continues to be helping our Senior Citizens and our Disabled. These persons with Over-65 and Disability exemptions are offered an additional payment option to choose from, allowing them to pay their taxes in four installments instead of one. Additionally, Senior and Disabled Citizens who do not become delinquent under this 4-Quarter payment plan will not incur any penalties or interest,” said Uresti.
These two groups have until January 31 to make the 1st installment of this 4-Quarter payment plan. The bill is broken up into 4 equal installment payments with due dates of January, March, May, and July. Uresti’s goal is to make monthly payment plans available to all taxpayers in future years.
To accommodate taxpayers who still need to pay their tax bill by the January 31 deadline, the Tax Assessor-Collector’s office will extend its hours of operation. All four locations of the Bexar County Tax Assessor-Collector’s offices will be open from 8 a.m. until 6:30 p.m. on Wednesday, January 30 and Thursday, January 31.
In addition to the extended hours, the main office at 233 N. Pecos and W. Martin will have two convenient curb payment drop-off sites open from the hours of 7:30 a.m. until 6:30 p.m. The other three Tax Assessor substations will also have payment drop-off sites from 4 p.m. until 6:30 p.m. All drop-off sites will only take checks. All cash and credit card transactions must be conducted inside the tax offices. Taxpayers who may have misplaced their tax bill or have questions about their 2012 tax amount owed should contact the tax office at (210) 335-2251, or they may verify their bill on the internet by going to the website at www.bexar.org/tax.
The internet site also includes expanded payment methods for those who wish to pay by credit card or e-check. Credit card and E-check payments may be made on-line through the Tax Office website, www.bexar.org/tax, or by calling 1-888-852-3572. Transactions must be completed before midnight on January 31. Credit card and e-Check services have an added processing fee customers must pay to the payment processing companies. Payments mailed to the office must be postmarked by January 31. Taxpayers who mail payments on the due date are encouraged to register, certify, or obtain a certificate of mailing for their envelope to ensure an accurate postmark date and timely receipt.