SAN DIEGO — The county tax collector's offices are closed to the public right now because of the stay-at-home order, but don't let that fool you. Property taxes are still due April 10.
“The date is still the date according to the tax code and that's the date we have to abide by,” said Dan McAllister, San Diego County’s Treasurer-Tax Collector, adding that he currently has no plans for a blanket order to waive late fees.
Both federal and state income tax deadlines have been postponed until July 15, but McAllister said he doesn’t have the power to postpone property taxes. He said residents can fill out a form asking for a penalty cancellation request. However, just because you were laid off or had hours cut due to the coronavirus crisis doesn't guarantee you'll be granted a waiver - unless you actually have the virus.
“Right now, we're pretty much focused on the victims - the people who have encountered the disease in one way shape or form or another," McAllister said.
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McAllister said his office's hands are tied by state law, but Assemblyman Brian Maienschein disagreed. Maienschein wrote a letter to McAllister, asking him to reconsider his position and offer a waiver to all residents.
"They seem to be interpreting a very strict interpretation which we in the legislature said is incorrect,” Maienschein told News 8.
He said it's ridiculous to punish people who, but for the pandemic, would have paid on time. Once the stay-at-home order is lifted, he expects leaders in Sacramento to clarify, through emergency legislation, that tax collectors can make a blanket order to waive late fees in these types of situations.
McAllister reminded residents that you don't have to come to an office to pay your taxes. You can do it online for free through an e-check. If you pay by credit card, you will still have to pay an extra fee.