NEW HAVEN ACHIEVES HIGHEST TAX COLLECTION RATE IN MORE THAN 30 YEARS
(8/31/2007) NEW HAVEN- Today, the fiscal year 2006-2007 books close in New Haven. As of 12 noon, the City’s Tax Collector, C.J. Cuticello announced the New Haven’s highest tax collection rate in more than 30 years: 98.60 percent (with five more hours of collections to go). This number demonstrates an increase from last year’s final rate of 98.53 percent. Tallies at the end of the day are expected to bring the percentage up by a few hundredths of a point.
“Overall, when comparing the collections of comparable cities, we rank the highest,” said Cuticello. “We’ve had a great collection period with staff working hard as a team. This year’s increase in collections is great but our sights are still set on achieving that 100 percent. Year after year we continue to get closer.”
The announcement earlier this month that the City would begin its Bootfinder program for a third year in a row stimulated a major response from residents leading to lines of hundreds of people arriving at City Hall to pay their balances. Since August 20th Cuticello reports bringing in $3,085,000 in delinquent taxes of which $1,300,000 represents delinquent motor vehicle taxes. Accordingly, since August 20th, the Tax Office has processed 5,237 transactions.
“We’re doing better and better every year,” said Mayor John DeStefano, Jr. “The more we increase our tax collection rate, the better we position ourselves to increase services to our residents. Our schools are performing better than we’ve seen in decades. CMT scores are up in 8 out of the 10 areas the state measures for. We’re putting 30 more officers on the street after next Friday’s commencement. We’re installing traffic calming solutions in areas of concern throughout the City. All of these services and improvements are because of the taxes paid by our residents and the good work of the tax office in making sure that everyone has the opportunity and information they need to pay their share.”
In the first two weeks of the Bootfinder program 470 vehicles have been towed accounting for $134,000 in delinquent motor vehicle tax payments by residents trying to get their vehicles back. Further, $32,000 in delinquent parking tickets has been recovered through the Bootfinder program.
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