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Coronavirus

Kendall County Board OKs property tax late fee, interest relief for residents

Kendall County Board member Matt Kellogg (center) talks as members Matt Prochaska (left) and Robyn Vickers (right) listen during a Tuesday, Dec. 17 Kendall County Board meeting at the county office building in Yorkville.
Kendall County Board member Matt Kellogg (center) talks as members Matt Prochaska (left) and Robyn Vickers (right) listen during a Tuesday, Dec. 17 Kendall County Board meeting at the county office building in Yorkville.

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YORKVILLE – Kendall County property taxpayers can now apply for more time to pay the first installment on their tax bills this spring without penalties or interest under a plan approved by the County Board early this week.

Kendall County Board members voted, 9-0, in favor of delaying interest and penalties on the bills for residents during their remote meeting Tuesday, April 21. County Board member Tony Giles was present for the remote meeting but was unable to cast his vote due to technical difficulties.

County officials said the intent of the proposal was to offer some relief for county property owners experiencing financial difficulties due to the COVID-19 coronavirus pandemic.

County property tax bills are due each year in two installment payments, one June and the second in September. The treasurer's office typically mails out the tax bills at the end of April or in early May.

County Board member Matt Kellogg said the application will be due June 1 and the first installment of property taxes are due June 10. He said it would delay payment until Aug. 10.

"At that time, if it is not paid, then it will revert back to the June date for penalties and interest," Kellogg said. "It does not change the dates for any of the tax due dates and this does not affect the second payment in any way."

Kendall County Treasurer Jill Ferko said copies of the one-page applications will be sent with the bills for the first payment. She said the application also will be available on the county's website, co.kendall.il.us.

Ferko said she urges residents to actually open their tax bills when they come in this time around. She said her office also has been getting a lot of phone calls about the application already.

"People are already anticipating something at this point in time," Ferko said.

The update comes after county officials discussed the application during their remote Committee of the Whole meeting on Thursday and the remote April 7 County Board meeting.

Kellogg said the application must be completed by the owner of the property in question. County officials have said this applies to any properties they own within Kendall County and not just their primary residence.

Ferko had said about 40% of residential property taxes are paid through escrow, according to the treasurer's office's collections. She had said the office typically sees escrow payments with residential properties and not commercial properties.

Kendall County Board Chairman Scott Gryder had said the county doesn't anticipate a delay in receiving those escrow property tax payments.

Gryder said county officials also have contacted other taxing bodies, including school districts, since they count on receiving revenues from the first installment payment by the end of their fiscal years in June. He had said those officials understood this is a unique time and there are going to be challenges that everybody will have to work through due to the coronavirus pandemic, but they still had obvious concerns about receiving that revenue in time.

Gryder reiterated that property taxes technically are still due at the usual time. He said the property tax revenue distribution to affected taxing bodies will still happen, even if it might be a slightly smaller amount than usual.

"But this gives a little bit of relief to those who may be out of work as a result of the pandemic or at least their income is lesser than it was," Gryder said.

Ferko confirmed funds will be distributed to those taxing bodies as they come in.

Ferko had said the treasurer's office typically collects $300,000 to $350,000 in late fees every year. She had said most of those late fees come after the second installment.

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