October 30, 2012
KINGSPORT – A renewed, cooperative effort between the City of Kingsport, and the Sullivan and Hawkins counties Property Assessor offices allowed the City of Kingsport to begin sending property tax notices much earlier this year, with mailings beginning the last week of August.
“The earlier mailing served as a friendly reminder that property tax payment deadline is November 30 to avoid penalties, allowing property owners to budget a little more in advance for that deadline,” Kingsport Senior Accountant Sid Cox said. “Ultimately, this is also a customer service effort, as the earlier notices also allow us to mitigate long lines which tend to develop closer to the November 30th deadline.”
In all, the City billed approximately $32.58 million in tax payments for the calendar year 2012 season, with another $1 million in public utility taxes assessed by the State of Tennessee due by the end of the year, for a total levy of about $33.5 million.
To date, 24 percent of all due taxes have been paid, or about $7.9 million. Payments may be mailed or paid in person at the City’s Customer Service Center, located at City Hall, 225 West Center Street. Mailed payments must be postmarked on or before November 30 to avoid penalty.
Property taxes become delinquent beginning December 1st and incur a penalty of 2 percent on that date. Taxes remaining delinquent on January 1st will incur an additional 2 percent penalty, with a further 1 percent penalty accruing monthly thereafter until paid in full.
On average, the City of Kingsport collects between 97 and 98 percent of all billed property taxes in the year due.
In addition, the City of Kingsport participates in a property tax relief program with the State of Tennessee. Seniors over age 65, those who are rated totally and permanently disabled, as well as military service related 100 percent disabled veterans, may qualify for property tax relief on their 2012 taxes.
In general, for those over age 65 or others who are totally and permanently disabled, the property tax relief program is available for those making $26,830 or less in income, including any spousal income, for calendar year 2011. Eligible taxpayers may receive up to $115.89 in tax relief.
Disabled veterans and widows/widowers of a disabled veteran meeting the eligibility requirements may receive up to $811.21 of assistance on their 2012 property taxes without having to provide income amounts.
To enroll in the Property Tax Relief program, applicants need to bring their City property tax notice, proof of 2011 income from all sources (except for qualifying veterans or widow/widowers of qualifying veterans), Social Security Card, Medicare Card, and deed information if they are new property owners.
Newly qualifying applicants must pay their property taxes in full and will receive a reimbursement from the State of Tennessee for the amount of their qualifying assistance.
Previously approved applicants need to complete and sign the back of the voucher they receive and make their tax payment, which is reduced by the amount of eligible tax relief.
Any Kingsport property owner who has not received a tax statement or anyone with questions concerning a property tax bill or eligibility for property tax relief should call the Customer Service Center at (423) 229-9418.