The Daily Globe - Serving Gogebic, Iron and Ontonagon Counties

Iron officials hear update on delinquent taxes


Cortney Ofstad/Daily Globe

JAMES KICHAK, of Mercer, and Jack Prospero, of Hurley, look over the agenda during an Iron County Finance Committee meeting Thursday morning in Hurley.

HURLEY - The Iron County Finance Committee heard an update on tax-delinquent properties in Iron County during a meeting Thursday morning.

Nineteen properties throughout Iron County are on a list for being tax delinquent for four years, 2010-2013.

To delay the county taking the property, property owners have to pay the taxes from the furthest year of delinquency, 2010. If they pay taxes for 2010, the owners do not have to worry about being tax delinquent for another year.

According to clerk Michael Saari, some of the properties will be "cleared up by next month's finance meeting," and all property owners will be "treated the same."

Basically, property owners will be given one month to either pay their tax balance for 2010, or the county takes the property.

If the county does take the property, and the owner wants it back, the owner is required to pay all four years of taxes upfront, with an additional $500 penalty.

Saari said owners have three years, according to state statute, but the county can avoid that period by having owners sign off on the property, saying they don't want it anymore. More often than not, the property is sold by the county well before the three-year period is up.

"I just wanted to let you all know that process is starting," Saari said to the committee. " ... By the next finance meeting, it will be over."

Changing banks

The committee asked for an update on the change-over of the county's depository.

Last month, the committee heard a presentation from Chippewa Valley Bank in Hurley, asking the county to look into moving the depository there from Associated Bank, also in Hurley.

The committee decided to recommend the move to the Iron County Board of Supervisors, because of less imposed fees and more interest money available at CVB.

Thursday, Saari told the committee about Associated Bank's stance on the move.

"They basically told me, 'We can't match that,' and told us to do what we have to do," Saari said.

The recommendation will be on the agenda for the county board to approve or deny at the end of July.

Once approved by the board, the move will officially take place.


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