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Chatham County mails tax listing forms

By Debra J. Henzey
Posted Tuesday, January 2, 2007

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Pittsboro, NC - With the arrival of 2007, Chatham County residents can expect to receive their 2007 listing notices within the next few days. The Chatham County Tax Office mailed annual listing notices to residents last week, according to Tax Administrator Kim Horton. Taxpayers that have not received their notices by Friday (January 12) should contact the Tax Office immediately.

Other items that taxpayers should be aware of include:

· Personal Property Tax Listing: According to North Carolina law, those owning personal property in the county as of January 1, 2007 (with the exception of licensed motor vehicles) are required to list the property with the Chatham County Tax Office by January 31, 2007. The listing period runs from January 1, 2007 to January 31, 2007.

Any listings received by the county after this period will be subject to a late listing penalty of 10 percent of the tax owed. Personal property includes unlicensed vehicles, boats, mobile homes, airplanes, motors, and any appliances or other personal property provided by a landlord for tenants.

· Property Tax Relief for the Elderly and Permanently Disabled: Under North Carolina law, the elderly and permanently disabled can apply for property tax relief if their annual income does not exceed $20,500. If qualified for this exemption, a portion of the appraised value of their residences can be exempted from property taxes.

The exempted portion is either $20,000 or 50% of the appraised value of the home, depending on which one of these is the greater amount. For example, if a qualifying person owns a $60,000 house, only $30,000 of the house will be subject to taxation.

To qualify for relief, a property owner must have an income of $20,500 or less per year and must be either age 65 or older or must be totally and permanently disabled. Those who received the exemption last year and still meet the requirements do not have to reapply for the exemption unless their place of residence has changed. Property owners who no longer meet the requirements of the exemption must notify the Tax Office.

If you are responsible for listing the property of someone who is deceased and who qualified for the exemption last year, you must notify the Tax Office. Applications for the relief must be made by June 1, 2007.

· Property Tax Exemptions: Under state law, real estate and personal property used for certain religious, educational, or other purposes may qualify for a property tax exemption. Owners of property currently receiving the exemption do not have to reapply for the exemption, unless: 1) the use of the property has changed; 2) the owner has purchased additional property; or, 3) improvements have been made to or removed from the property. Applications for this exemption must be made by January 31, 2007.

· Land Use Deferments: Under state law, land that is actively used for commercial agriculture, forestry, or horticulture production may be eligible for reduced-rate taxation. Contact the Tax Office for more information on “land use deferments.” The deadline to apply for deferments is January 31, 2007.

· Unpaid 2006 Property Taxes: Tax bills for real and personal property were due by 5:00 p.m. on January 6, 2007. Interest will accrue on unpaid bills as of January 7, 2007. At this point, the Tax Office can begin collection procedures for late tax bills, including advertising unpaid real estate property taxes at an additional cost to the taxpayer. Unpaid real property taxes sold during the year of 2006 will be advertised in the present owners’ names.

Other collection procedures include garnishment of wages, attachment of funds, and foreclosure. The Tax Office can attach any state income tax refunds due to taxpayers. Contact the tax collector at 542-8260 to make arrangements to have taxes paid in full by June 30, 2007.

For more information about any of the items listed above, or your taxes in general, please contact the Chatham County Tax Office at (919) 542-8250 or 542-8260.

 
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