Tax map department to close on Fridays to save money

Published 9:24 am Wednesday, January 9, 2013

The county tax map department will operate on a reduced schedule starting this week.

To offset reductions in the 2013 budget, County Engineer Doug Cade has decided the tax map office will close every day at lunchtime from noon to 12:30 p.m. and close all day on Fridays.

“The bottom line is the commissioners have given us a budget to live with and we will live within our means,” Cade said.

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There is only one employee in that office that is funded from the general fund. The remainder of the engineer’s office is funded from the Motor Vehicle Gas Tax.

The tax map department is the first step in the process of transferring property. A deed is brought to the engineer’s office for review of the property’s legal description.

“We review it to see it meets minimum standards in order to draw it correctly on the tax map and adequately tax that property,” Cade said.

Then the auditor’s office transfers the property before the recorder’s office records it.

“Our office does not charge nor does it have the statutory authority to charge a fee for the services we offer,” Cade said in a letter to the commissioners. “The only revenue authority that our office has is charging for copies which is minimal. While some may think I need to simply move revenue from the Motor Vehicle Gas Tax that maintains 98.4 percent of county engineer’s office budget, Ohio law does not permit to do that.”

In 2012 the tax department reviewed 1,927 property transfers with a single employee, who spends just over one hour per deed, Cade said.