Long lines on last day to save on property taxes

Posted at 6:49 AM, Dec 01, 2015
and last updated 2015-12-01 06:49:11-05

Monday was the final day to save 4 percent on Palm Beach County property taxes, which brought long lines with residents trying to save some cash.

Some complained about standing in line in the heat.

"I can't stand it," said Jasmine Jimenez of West Palm Beach. "Usually it's in and out but today it's this long line."

Others, somewhat, took it in stride.

"Terrible but what can we do?" said Elisa Pritto of Lake Worth.

Some Palm Beach County residents were dealt bad news on the last day to get a maximum 4 percent discount on property taxes.

The tax collector's office in Lake Worth was at capacity causing about a one hour and 20-minute wait for most of the day.

"About 75 percent pay the first month to get the four percent discount," said Palm Beach County Tax Collector Anne Gannon.

That translated into long lines and packed parking lots. At the branch on the first floor of the government building, the wait at lunchtime was more than an hour.

"Prices of taxes keep going up and up, so I'd rather pay the discounted rate than have to pay more," said Cheryl Cruz of West Palm Beach.

 Paying taxes early actually benefits the county.

"It allows them to fund their budget, and it's not just the county, t's the school board, it's our special taxing district," explained Gannon. "Anyone we collect taxes on behalf of."

The best advice is to pay online or drop your bill in the onsite drop box.

If you didn't pay Monday, you can still get the discount on your property taxes, just not the full 4 percent.

Starting Tuesday, you can save 3 percent through the end of next month, followed by 2 percent through January and then a savings of 1 percent. Taxes are delinquent on April 1.

The county collects property taxes from 612,796 parcels, excluding railroad and installment properties.