Seven Jefferson County businesses will be served with Certificates of Indebtedness for failing to pay their 2016 delinquent taxes, according to the Jefferson County Tax Collector’s Office.
They are:Dr. Michael Glover, DC Inc., $117.54Jefferson Dental Lab, $700.82MA Business Inc. (Skymart), $1,242.96The Light House, $671.12Fiesta Mexicana Mexican Restaurant, $482.36Yonas Habte, $1,260.76Joe Willie Strong (Strong Auto Repair), $550.33
County Tax Collector Stephanie Stanton said in an email to The Commercial that writs were filed with the Jefferson County Sheriff’s Office and deputies will serve them. She said an additional business that has a debt of $20,867.60 will not have a writ served pending payment this month.
Stanton said that after the tax books were closed on Oct. 15 and all the mail was processed, there were 452 businesses owing $247,342.02, out of 2,976 businesses in the county, whose taxes were unpaid. The total county business taxes for 2016 were $8,191,284.60.
Delinquent notices were sent to those 452 businesses on Oct. 24, and on Nov. 8 and 9, collector’s office workers contacted 337 businesses by phone, telling them they had until 5 p.m. Nov. 9 to pay or more fees would be added to their accounts and their names would be listed in The Commercial and on the office’s Facebook page.
A total of 116 businesses paid in those two days, leaving 221 delinquent businesses owing $89,381.57.
On Dec. 20, certified letters were mailed to all the delinquent businesses that had good addresses, and on Feb. 9, certificates of indebtedness were filed against 11 businesses. Three of those came in to pay after receiving the certificates of indebtedness.
Stanton said that currently, there are 79 delinquent businesses that owe a total of $45,096.77, but 24 of those are out of business.
“We have a 99 percent collection rate on Jefferson County businesses since 2006,” Stanton said in the email. “As of today (Friday) we have a 97.31 percent collection rate on the 2016 taxes for businesses, but upon completion of the writs, this will increase to 99 percent.”
“We strive to ensure that every resident pays their fair share of taxes,” Stanton said. “We will continue to file Certificates of Indebtedness and Writs on all open businesses until we receive the tax money that is due our county.”
She said that there are few taxes that are considered uncollectable because the particular business has closed and was unincorporated.
“Unfortunately, taxes are one year behind,” Stanton said. “Therefore, when they become delinquent, it is two years before we can begin our collection process.”
Stanton said 75 percent of the taxes collected in the county are returned to public schools.