Sullivan tax notices in the mail

J. H. Osborne • Sep 4, 2012 at 2:33 AM

BLOUNTVILLE -- Tax notices should be arriving in the mail this week for Sullivan County property owners, County Trustee Frances Harrell said last week.

It will be the first time property owners get a bill after the Sullivan County Commission voted to increase the county property tax rate by 20 cents per $100 of assessed value.

To avoid interest and potential penalties, property owners must pay taxes which cover the period of Jan. 1, 2012, through Dec. 31, 2012 by the end of February 2013.

But taxes are considered due upon receipt. County officials hope many property owners will begin paying their taxes as soon as possible to help improve the county's cash flow and potentially stave off the need to borrow money for that purpose.

Failure to receive a tax notice, or dispute of a property's assessed worth, are not excuses for not paying on time.

If you do not have a mortgage and do not receive a notice, contact the trustees office at 323-6464.

If you've moved in the past year and do not receive a tax notice on properties you own, it might mean you need to update the information on file with the property assessors office, Harrell said. To do so, call 323-6455.

Property owners with questions about their bill need to make inquiries with Harrell's office before the deadline.

The office also typically gets numerous calls from people with questions about a state program that provides tax relief for elderly or disabled property owners, Harrell said.

The requirements for the rebate program for taxes are:

•You owned and lived in the home as your main residence in 2012.

•You must be 65 years old on or before Dec. 31, 2012, or you must be totally and permanently disabled as rated by the Social Security Administration or other qualified agency on or before Dec. 31, 2012.

•Income for all property owners for the year 2011 must be less than $26,830.

Harrell said all three requirements must be met by the property owner for participation in the tax rebate program.

A similar tax relief program is available to eligible disabled veterans and widows or widowers of disabled veterans.

The trustees office at the historic Sullivan County Courthouse in Blountville is open from 8 a.m. to 5 p.m. Monday through Friday.

Offices are also located at the Bristol Justice Center and at Kingsport City Hall. They have the same operating hours as the Blountville office. Drop boxes are located at the Blountville and Kingsport offices.

To receive a receipt for payments put in drop boxes or mailed, taxpayers need to include a stamped, self-addressed envelope, Harrell said.

Sullivan County's property tax rate is $2.3307 per $100 of assessed value.

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