During the past 18 months, the city has accelerated its effort to collect unpaid property taxes and to foreclose on properties when its owners have shown no interest or ability to pay the city what they owe.
During that time, the city has collected a whopping $2.1 million.
In addition, the city has foreclosed on three substantial properties and have already sold one. When the remaining two are auctioned, the city should collect at least an additional $1.3 million.
“Everyone must pay their taxes. There can be no exceptions,” said Mayor Carlo DeMaria.
DeMaria said that this effort was not exclusively about getting the tax arrearage at the expense of those who are hurting because of the economy.
“Everyone in this administration involved in collecting taxes, from the treasurer to the solicitor, to the assessor has been instructed to aid those who were sold mortgages they cannot pay by predatory lenders. They have assisted many homeowners and residents with their difficulties,” said the mayor.
The mayor pointed out that some property owners recently contacted in the collection sweep up had not paid property taxes in 20 years.