April 10 Property Tax Deadline Critical for Counties, Schools, and Other Local Agencies
March 26, 2020
CSAC and a broad coalition of local agency associations—including CACTTC, RCRC, UCC, the League of Cities, CSDA, CSBA, CASBO, and ACSA—have voiced strong opposition to any postponement of the April 10 property tax deadline and sent a letter to policy makers Saturday afternoon.
Changing the deadline would have severe fiscal consequences not only for counties, but also schools, cities, and special districts that rely on the mid-April revenue to pay structured debts and provide the emergency response services so necessary at this time. Many taxpayers have already sent the funds to their banks through their monthly mortgage payments, and there is no public purpose served if those banks are allowed to hold the funds beyond the statutory deadline. For those that have not, and who are unable to pay due to circumstances beyond their control, existing law allows county tax collectors to cancel penalties and other charges.
Unlike income and other taxes that are collected throughout the year, property taxes are split between just two collection dates, December 10 and April 10. Counties are expecting an influx of approximately $75 billion over the next two weeks, much of it from the companies that hold property owners’ escrowed amounts on their behalf. That money is then allocated to other taxing agencies over the course of just a few days, providing what for many is the largest source of general fund dollars.