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Summary: Current law allows a person to authorize another person to pay taxes imposed by a taxing unit on a person’s real property. Current law also allows tax liens to be transferred to another person for taxes that are delinquent, and for taxes that are not delinquent at the time of payment provided the property is not subject to a recorded mortgage lien or the property owner has authorized to a transfer of tax liens for both delinquent and non-delinquent taxes.
HB 2687 would allow the governing body of a taxing unit to prohibit the transfer of tax liens that exist in favor of the taxing unit.
Analysis: We support the policy of allowing property owners to transfer tax liens to others that can pay for them. Taxes are being paid, the property owner is showing personal responsibility in finding someone to help them out with taxes or tax liens, and this helps property owners avoid the adverse effects of delinquency.
However, we do not oppose HB 2687 because it should be a matter of local tax policy whether a governing unit chooses to extend this opportunity, as HB 2687 allows. Moreover, governing units that do choose to adopt this more lenient policy can promote themselves as more taxpayer friendly governing units when compared to others that do not adopt this policy. For this reason, we are neutral on HB 2687.