The Los Angeles County Board of Supervisors unanimously approved a motion authored by Supervisor Kathryn Barger and co-authored by Supervisor Hilda Solis to support SB 219 (McGuire) which would enable the local auditor or tax collector to cancel any penalties or costs resulting from property tax delinquency due to a documented hardship arising from the COVID-19 “Safer-at-Home” orders.
“The Safer-at-Home orders impacted every single resident and business throughout Los Angeles County, and it is imperative for the County to partner with the State to support our taxpayers who suffered financially,” said Barger, whose 5th District includes the Santa Clarita Valley. “SB 219 is one opportunity to provide much-needed relief and assistance for those negatively affected by the COVID-19 pandemic.”
“Support for SB 219 aligns with the County’s approach to ensuring an equitable recovery for all, especially among our hardest hit residents who are still reeling from the economic, social and psychological impacts of the pandemic,” said Solis, Los Angeles County Board of Supervisors Chair. “The economic recovery of our residents is dependent on how well we support them, which is why I authored a motion last year with Supervisor Barger directing the Treasurer and Tax Collector to consider the impact of COVID-19 on delinquent property owners and cancel any late penalty. SB 219 reinforces our authority and empowers counties statewide to provide the same support to their residents who may face economic hardships brought on by COVID-19.”
If passed by the State Legislature, SB 219 would codify the County tax collector’s ability to cancel tax delinquent penalties when failure to make the payment is due to a documented financial hardship arising from a shelter-in-place order, and if the principal amount of tax due is paid no later than June 30 of the fiscal year in which the payment first became delinquent. This bill would change the enforcement of late payment penalties to individuals who have been impacted through no fault of their own. SB 219 is supported by the California State Association of Counties, the Urban Counties of California, and the Rural County Representatives of California as a much-needed tool for County tax collectors that can maintain predictability of critical revenue support for local agencies. A copy of their support letter can be found here.
As a result of today’s board action, Los Angeles County legislative advocates will actively support SB 219 for passage in Sacramento.
A copy of the motion approved by the Board of Supervisors can be found here.