Clerical error omits homes from tax rolls

Published 9:43 am Saturday, March 10, 2012

COURTLAND—Real estate taxes totaling $7,276 went uncollected for three years in Southampton County after homes on seven properties were not included on the tax rolls, said Commissioner of Revenue Amy Carr.

Carr told the Board of Supervisors during its recent meeting she could collect the unpaid taxes for the past three years. Most were billed last year when the company reassessing the county’s 12,000 properties determined the homes were not on the tax rolls.

Law requires that a reassessment be done at least every six years to reflect current market values for real estate taxing purposes. The county hired Wingate and Associates from Roanoke for the project.

The last reassessment in the county was effective for the 2006 tax year. The fieldwork took place in 2005.

Carr assumes a clerical error during the reassessment for 2006 resulted in the homes not being on the tax rolls.

“It’s impossible to do a reassessment without a mistake,” she said.

None of the property owners contacted the county asking why they weren’t billed for their homes.

“They received a tax bill,” Carr said. “It’s just that the structure was left off. Some didn’t receive any bill at all. A lot of times if you own your home, your tax bill goes to your mortgage company.”

Most of the property owners who were billed for back taxes are paying, she said.

“Most accounts I feel sure have already paid,” Carr said.

Treasurer David Britt, who collects the taxes, could not be reached Friday.