FLORENCE- "It's exciting," says Pinal Country Treasurer Dodie Doolittle as she looks over the computer screen that holds future tax-lien property that will be up for grabs on Tuesday, February 21 and Wednesday, February 22.
The tax-lien sale is a yearly event held by the Treasurer's Office which places the amount of taxes owed on a property for the previous tax year up for sale. The auction will offer the tax-lien only and potential bidders will offer a percentage (up to 16 percent of the amount owed) on the tax lien.
This year will be the first time that Pinal County has held the auction by internet only.
"Mojave County did it last year," Doolittle said. "They experienced a slight increase in bidding. The reason why we are doing this is for the convenience for those who would like to bid. At times we would see people come from all over the country to bid for these tax-liens. This time they can stay at home to bid."
The properties will be broken up into four categories over a two-day period. Bidding on the first group of properties will begin on February 21 at 8:00 am and will close at 12:00 pm. The entire auction will end on February 22 at 5:00 pm. To register as a bidder-a refundable deposit of $500.00 is required. If a tax-lien is acquired, the deposit can be used to help pay for the winning bid.
Treasurer Doolittle and her staff are offering training in Florence for the internet system on Thursday, February 16. To schedule an appointment to see how this new system will work, please call (520) 866-6434.
While other counties have paid a fee to use an outside company's program to auction off tax-liens, the Treasurer's staff brainstormed and came up with a program in-house. "This is saving the taxpayers a lot of money in the end," Doolittle said. "Our staff here Maureen O'Connell and Fran Denoncourt worked together to make a system that will fit our needs."
In looking over the program, Doolittle explained that the 2006 list of tax-liens is one of the smallest she has seen in a long time. "That means people are paying their taxes," she said.