Los Fresnos News

Delinquent Tax Notices Have Been Mailed Avoid Additional Penalities

_logoCCCounty Offers Payment Alternative

BROWNSVILLE, TEXAS — In light of the economic hardships faced by many, Cameron County Tax Assessor-Collector Tony Yzaguirre, Jr. is trying to inform taxpayers who have not yet paid their 2012 taxes of a payment alternative available for paying property taxes. A total of 34,167 delinquent tax notices for tax year 2012 have been mailed out for real estate accounts which have not been paid. “I urge any property owner who cannot pay their taxes in full, to visit any of our tax offices and take advantage of payment plan options available to taxpayers like a tax payment agreement” Yzaguirre said. A tax payment agreement is an installment plan for the payment of taxes, penalties, and interest “On July 1, 2013, all delinquent real estate tax accounts, by law, will be turned over to the delinquent tax law firm. At that point a 12.5% or 20% attorney fees (depending upon the policy adopted by each tax jurisdiction) will be automatically assessed or added to the balance of taxes due unless the taxpayer enters into a tax payment agreement.

Taxes for 2012 became delinquent on February 1, 2013, but if a taxpayer signs a Tax Payment Agreement with the Tax Assessor-Collector’s Office before June 30th of this year, no attorney fees for taxes due for 2012 will be added on July 1st to those taxpayers that continue to make their payments timely. “The installment plan provides taxpayers a little relief by allowing them several additional months to pay their taxes in installments without threat of a lawsuit” said Yzaguirre. A delinquent tax penalty, adopted under Section 33.07 of the Property Tax Code, does not apply to delinquent taxes subject to installment agreements entered into under Section 33.02 of the Texas Property Tax Code prior to July 1st of the year in which the taxes became delinquent.

Included in the consolidated statement for the first time are the Point Isabel Independent School District, City of Port Isabel, City of South Padre Island, Town of Laguna Vista and the Laguna Madre Water District. “This will be the first year taxpayers from the Laguna Madre Area will receive a single consolidated statement,” said Yzaguirre. “Taxpayers can pay their taxes online at www.cameroncountytax.org or at any of our offices countywide including our Port Isabel Branch Tax Office located at 505 Highway 100, Port Isabel Texas,” added Yzaguirre. A new feature of the redesigned 2012 statement is the return coupon located at the bottom of that statement that along with new technology in the Tax Assessor-Collector’s Office will allow for quicker clearing of tax payments. “ Checks may be converted to an electronic check file, this will allow my office to operate more efficiently, however, the checks may clear more quickly this year than taxpayers have been used to over the years,” added Yzaguirre.

“Approximately 92% of property taxes that the Cameron County collects for have already been paid,” said Yzaguirre. The Cameron County Tax Assessor-Collector’s Office is responsible for collecting a total tax levy of $264,709,387.56 million dollars from October 2012 thru September 2013 for a total of thirty-eight tax districts within Cameron County. The office has already collected a total of $240,995,489.42 which is approximately 91.04% of total 2012 tax levy. Outstanding collections are $23,713,898.14, which includes all taxing jurisdictions. The tax levy for Cameron County is $61,408,831.25, of which $56,368,377.72 or 91.79% has been collected by the Tax Assessor-Collector’s Office to date.

Tax Year 2012 personal property taxes not paid prior to April 3, 2013 have already been turned over to the delinquent tax law firm pursuant to Section 33.11 of the Texas Property Tax Code.

Methods of Payment

  • Payments over the Internet – allows taxpayers to pay their taxes by electronic check or credit card in the convenience of their home or office over the internet by going to www.cameroncountytax.org .
  • Partial payments – allows taxpayers come into the office and pay their taxes in several payments.
  • Quarterly payments – allows taxpayers who are over 65 years of age, to pay their taxes in quarterly payments without penalty and accruing interest in accordance with Texas Property Tax Code Sec. 31.031.
  • Tax payment agreement – where a taxpayer comes into our office and signs a payment agreement to pay their taxes in accordance with Texas Property Tax Code Sec. 33.02.
  • Mail-In payments – when a taxpayer mails the total amount of their property taxes.
  • Over the counter payments – when a taxpayer pays their taxes over the counter using their check, cash or credit card (VISA, MasterCard, Discover, and American Express).

“By making partial payments, and arrangements to pay off the balance on their account, property owners can avoid a lawsuit, which adds even more costs,” Yzaguirre said. “Disabled or Senior Citizens Over Age 65 may make quarterly payments of their property taxes if they qualify for an exemption under Section 11.13(c),”Yzaguirre said. Those who make quarterly payments on time will not be assessed penalties for late payments.

The Tax Assessor-Collector’s Office collects taxes for Cameron County, South Texas Independent School District, Brownsville Independent School District, Brownsville Navigation District, Port of Harlingen, Texas Southmost College, Cameron County Emergency District, Drainage District #1, Drainage District #3, Drainage District #4, Drainage District #5, City of Brownsville, City of Combes, City of Indian Lake, Town of Palm Valley, City of Primera, Town of Rancho Viejo, City of Los Fresnos, City of San Benito, Valley Municipal Utility District #2, Paseo De La Resaca Municipal Utility District 1,2,3, Santa Maria Independent School District, City of Rio Hondo, Paseo De La Resaca Landscaping and Maintenance District, Town of Bayview, Santa Rosa Independent School District, La Feria Independent School District, City of La Feria, Street Light Districts 1, 2, 3, 4, 5, and now Point Isabel Independent School District, City of Port Isabel, City of South Padre Island, Town of Laguna Vista, and Laguna Madre Water District.

“It is very important to pay all property taxes this year, because our office will continue with our aggressive collection programs this year,” Yzaguirre said.

The Cameron County Tax Office has nine locations countywide:

  • Cameron County Courthouse, 964 East Harrison, Brownsville, (956) 544-0800
  • Brownsville Southmost Branch Office, 2900 Southmost Road, Brownsville, (956) 574-8176
  • (Brownsville PD Southmost Community Network Center)
  • Brownsville West Side Branch Office, 1763 Military Highway, Brownsville, (956) 542-5854
  • (Brownsville PD West Side Community Network Center)
  • Harlingen Branch Office, 3302 Wilson Rd, (956) 427-8013
  • San Benito Branch Office (Old Levis Building),1390 W. Expressway 83, San Benito, (956) 361-8232
  • Los Fresnos Branch Office, 105 Ocean Boulevard, Los Fresnos, (956) 233-4494
  • Port Isabel Branch Office, 505 Highway 100, Port Isabel, (956) 943-8101
  • La Feria Branch Office, 200 Industrial Way, La Feria, (956) 797-3075
  • Rio Hondo Branch Office 125 W. Colorado, Rio Hondo, (956) 748-2345