San Mateo County Treasurer/Tax Collector Sandie Arnott announced today the extension of the second installment of property taxes from April 10 to May 4, when her offices is set to reopen to the public following the COVID-19 shelter-in-place order that runs until May 3.
“Payments would need to be made in the office on this date no later than 5 p.m. to avoid a penalty,” Arnott said in a statement today.
Despite the extension, Arnott urged taxpayers to submit their second installment by the April 10 deadline, noting that cities, counties, school districts and special districts need the timely payments of tax dollars to fund critical services, such as healthcare, public safety, social services and sanitation.
“It is vital that we ensure the funding they require to continue providing these services is collected on time to enable the County to apportion these much-needed dollars to them in April,” Arnott said. “Additionally, it is important that we have the funds required to pay debt service on school bonds due in April and May in order to prevent a negative credit rating that could impact future bond issues.”
On March 24, Arnott submitted a resolution to the County Board of Supervisors to extend the deadline to the next business day that offices reopen following the April 10 deadline. Since the decision was made to keep the Treasurer-Tax Collector offices closed for public health reasons on April 10, the next possible business day is Monday, May 4.
San Francisco also decided to extend its property tax deadline to May 4.
The Howard Jarvis Taxpayers Association (HJTA), which represents homeowners, has called on Gav. Gavin Newsom to extend the deadline to July 15, the date by which state and federal income tax payments have been extended. Representatives of local governments have conversely called on the governor to retain the April 10 deadline and to forgive penalties for those who can’t pay them due to the pandemic.
According to CalMatters, property tax deadlines are set by state law, and changing them must be done either by legislative act, which can’t happen due to lawmakers sheltering in place, or by executive order.
For San Mateo County residents who still need to pay the second installment, they can do so online, via mail, by automated phone system at 866-220-0308, or by using the drop box located at 555 County Center in Redwood City.
Photo of 555 County Center, home of San Mateo Tax Collector’s office, courtesy of the County of San Mateo.