08/21/14 — County tax bills are in the mail this week

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County tax bills are in the mail this week

By Steve Herring
Published in News on August 21, 2014 1:46 PM

Wayne County residents have begun receiving their property tax bills. And by the end of the month, all of the 71,000 tax notices being mailed out by the county tax office should have been delivered.

Taxpayers who do not receive their bill by Sept. 1 should contact the tax office, Tax Administrator Alan Lumpkin said.

People can call the tax collection office at 919-731-1478 or go online at www.waynegov.com to look at their bill.

Taxes are due Sept. 1, but are not delinquent until after Jan. 5, Lumpkin told Wayne County commissioners during their Tuesday meeting.

People have until 5 p.m. Jan. 5 to pay their tax bill without interest, he said. A 2 percent penalty will be added to bills not paid by the Jan. 5 deadline.

An additional three-quarters of a percent is added at the first of each following month to any outstanding balance until the bill is paid.

The tax department also handles the billing for all of the fire districts and all of the county's municipalities with the exception of Walnut Creek, which does its own tax billing.

A combined bill is more efficient and cost effective, Lumpkin said.

Commissioner Joe Daughtery asked if the county charged for the service.

The county collects a fee equal to 1.75 percent of the taxes collected, Lumpkin said. The fee was established in the 1970s.

Daughtery questioned whether the fee was sufficient since the cost associated with the collection has increased since that time.

Lumpkin explained that the amount collected through the fee has gone up as tax values and collections have increased.

County Manager George Wood said that most counties that collect taxes for municipalities charge up to 3 percent and that the 1.75 percent was a reasonable rate.

Taxpayers have several options for paying their bills.

They can still pay in person at the tax office on the first floor of the Wayne County Courthouse Annex or use a drop box located on the Ormond Avenue side of the courthouse.

Bills also can be paid online or by phone, but both those options carry a fee collected by the company that provides the service. The county does not receive any revenue from the fee.

People can also remove the bottom portion of the bill, write a check and mail it in. But they need to be aware that bills that are mailed must be postmarked no later than Jan 5 by the Postal Service.

Residents in the former Eureka, Faro, New Hope and East Wayne fire tax districts will see a different name associated with their fire tax this year. The Eureka and Faro departments merged to form Northeast Wayne and New Hope and East Wayne merged to form New Hope W.

People in the Faro and Eureka areas are used to seeing Faro Fire District and Eureka Fire District respectively on their bills. This year it will be listed as Northeast Wayne.

People in New Hope and East Wayne will see New Hope W on their bills.

The county tax rate is 66.65 cents per $100 of property valuation.

Municipal tax rates per $100 of property valuation are: Goldsboro, 65 cents; Fremont, 65 cents; Mount Olive, 59 cents; Eureka, 70 cents; Pikeville 60 cents; and Seven Springs, 54 cents.

Walnut Creek's rate is 38 cents.