Presentation on theme: "There Must Be 50 Ways to Dispose of Tax Delinquent Lands. Or…….. what happens to delinquent parcels once they leave the county."— Presentation transcript:
There Must Be 50 Ways to Dispose of Tax Delinquent Lands. Or…….. what happens to delinquent parcels once they leave the county.
Get it certified, Clyde! Properties certified to the State of Arkansas must have been delinquent for a least one year at the county level, but often the property is delinquent for up to 15-20 months before being certified.
Notify the owner, Homer! Once the property has been certified to the state, the State Land Office sets a public sale date and immediately sends notice to the owner of record Pre-sale and field research continue to prove successful in identifying changes in title and in helping to notify record owners. Sending out certified letters to the owner of record has boosted the number of redemptions dramatically. An average of 87% of the parcels certified to the State Land Office are redeemed in the two-year period prior to the sale.
Redemption is our aim, Wayne! Our goal is to return tax delinquent lands to private ownership primarily through redemption or payment of back taxes by the original property owner. Thanks to a better effort of notification, the number of properties redeemed each year continues to rise.
What happens after the notice, Otis? Within a two-year period, the owner may request a petition to redeem and pay the taxes, penalty, interest and fees owed on the property. Once this happens, the State Land Office issues a redemption deed, releasing the state’s tax lien on the property. The redemption deed is filed with the Circuit Clerk in the county where the property is located.
So, what’s a public sale, Dale? Tax delinquent property not redeemed in the two years following the official notification to the original owner is offered for sale at public auction. The highest bidder will pay at least the minimum bid, or assessed value, of the property, plus taxes, penalty, interest and fees due. Sales are held once per year in every county throughout Arkansas. The Commissioner of State Lands offers a free publication listing properties that are for sale.
And what’s the format, Pat? The auctions are widely advertised They are held in a convenient location in each county Bidding is open and competitive Free sale catalogs are distributed to allow bidders to “shop before they buy”
Sales are a last resort, Bart! When all other efforts to collect taxes have been exhausted, sales are necessary to return delinquent parcels to the tax rolls, where they may once again generate essential revenues for local government.
Then they get a deed, Reed. Following an additional 30-day grace period for redemption, a Limited Warranty Deed is issued to the purchaser.
$14 million since ’87, Kevin! More than $14 million has been collected from the sale of tax delinquent property since 1987. This represents around 14% of total collections.
What about turnback, Jack? Act 1021 of 1985 allowed the State Land Office to return delinquent tax collections, with 10% interest prescribed by law, to the county where the property is located. As collections have continued to rise, so has monthly turnback. Since 1988, nearly $66 million has been returned to Arkansas counties across the state. The State Land Office issues turnback checks monthly, with the dollar amount representing tax collections on county parcels for the preceding year.
What happens to the revenue, Hugh? The county uses the revenue primarily to fund local school districts, public safety, roads and libraries. Without redemptions and sales revenue collected by the State Land Office, counties and schools across the state could have lost $8 million in revenue for 2001 alone.
And if parcels don’t sell, Mel? Unsold parcels remain eligible for negotiated sale through a sealed bidding procedure. Often, when these parcels have been tax delinquent for several years, the Commis- sioner may accept an amount less than the minimum bid. Negotiated sales make up 64% of all sale deeds issued in the State Land Office.
What about Urban Homestead, Ned? Despite best efforts on the part of the State Land Office, there are still tax delinquent parcels that are neither redeemed by the record owner nor sold at auction. In these cases, properties remain eligible for sale on the Commissioner of State Lands’ negotiated sales list. Under the Urban Homestead Act, the Commissioner may donate tax delinquent properties to non-profit groups such as Habitat for Humanity and local housing authorities for the construction of low-income housing. Also, parcels may be donated to city or county governments for public-use projects, such as city parks. Since 1993, the donation of 251 tax delinquent parcels has helped revitalize communities across Arkansas. The donated land cannot be sold by the governmental entity to which it was donated.
That’s the end of the show, Flo! Questions? Comments? Thank you!