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Mr. Farnham, I am hearing from my taxpayers that they have filed homestead
declarations but the tax department has not processed them yet. This is not
fair to towns. Late-processed homestead declarations mean more work for us,
because after the abstract grand list is filed, we have to document every
change to it, including printing new pages for the permanent record and
tracking all of the changes whenever a property is moved from the
non-residential to the homestead grand list. If the taxpayer filed their
homestead on time, and the tax department hasn't gotten around to processing
it, this "creates significant and unnecessary work for the Department (which
is funded by all of our tax dollars)."  Except it isn't the department, it's
the Town. Your email below talks about the time that we are costing
taxpayers by making the tax department do extra work. I would ask for the
same consideration flowing in the other direction - this costs taxpayers at
the local level, and if the homestead was filed timely but delayed by the
tax department, the other taxpayers have to bear the cost of the extra time,
paper, envelopes and postage to send new bills. If they are due an
adjustment, we might be sending new bills twice, once when the declaration
is processed and once again when the income sensitivity is processed.

 

I understand that the listers are encouraged to notify the tax department
about people who have not filed, so it's taking their time as well. Should
they do that now, or later when more returns may have been processed? How
will they know when the department is caught up? We have approximately 95
residents who should have filed a homestead but we haven't received notice
that they have filed. That's over 10% of the parcels on our grand list. If
it's true that the tax department might not catch up until late summer or
fall, I might be sending revised bills after our due date. The homestead
rate is higher than the non-residential rate in Marshfield, so people might
be delinquent without ever having received the correct bill, due to the
delays and not due to any action on their part. How do you suggest I handle
that? Do we have to hold abatement hearings to remove delinquent interest
and penalties if a higher bill goes out after the due date? There is no
provision that I know of in NEMRC to allow me to adjust due dates on some
bills but not others. Are you going to issue guidance to towns about how to
handle the issues that the late processing is going to create?

 

From: Vermont Municipal Government Discussion Network
[mailto:[log in to unmask]] On Behalf Of Farnham, Douglas
Sent: Friday, June 2, 2017 11:21 AM
To: [log in to unmask]
Subject: Recording of Property Transfer Tax Returns

 

Good Afternoon Vermont Town Clerks and Assistant Clerks,

 

I wanted to take a moment to thank all of you for continuing to work with my
staff on the recording and transmission of property transfer tax returns and
touch on a couple of points which can make all of our lives easier. Linked
below are some instructions which are intended to help differentiate between
different versions of the property transfer tax return and help you know
when to record a document and when to mail it to the Department.

 

http://tax.vermont.gov/sites/tax/files/documents/PTTRTownClerksPaperCopiesFS
.pdf

 

I hope you all find the document helpful and would like to reinforce that,
if the document has "Draft do not record" in the upper right please do not
record the document as it is not considered a final return, creates a
confusing entry in your land records, and creates significant and
unnecessary work for the Department (which is funded by all of our tax
dollars). Returns which were prepared in ePTTR before the system was
decommissioned and not presented for recording will need to be resubmitted
through myVTax. The Department has provided 14 trainings around the state
for real estate professionals to help them use the myVTax filing system
correctly. 

 

Thank you all and please reach out to me with any questions, comments, or
concerns. Please feel free to redistribute this message as you see fit.

 

 

Sincerely,

 

Douglas R. Farnham | Director

Property Valuation & Review | Vermont Department of Taxes

802-828-6829 |  <http://www.tax.vermont.gov/> www.tax.vermont.gov 

 

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