Detroit courthouse owes county $1.2 million in back taxes

July 17, 2013 at 4:00 PM
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DETROIT, July 17 (UPI) -- Detroit owes the Wayne County tax collector more than $1.2 million in delinquent taxes on the city's courthouse building, a county official says.

Chief Deputy Treasurer David Szymanski said the bill on the 36th District Court building includes taxes from 2010 and 2011, as well as interest and fees, the Detroit Free Press reported Wednesday.

In 2012 the building was given tax-exempt status.

"We don't anticipate any problems," Szymanski said, adding that he contacted the city's chief financial officer this month about paying the bill.

Emergency city manager Kevyn Orr told creditors last month the city had not received $131 million in property taxes because only 53 percent of city property owners had paid their tax bills in 2011.

Orr has made better collection of revenue one of his goals as he attempts to keep the city out of bankruptcy court.

The court building was built with bonds issued by the Detroit Building Authority and became taxable when it was leased to a private entity in 1984. The bonds were paid off in February 2011 and the building was transferred to the city, said Beth Duncombe, director of the DBA.

She said taxes on the building would be paid this month.

Szymanski said if the taxes were not paid by the end of the month, the interest for August alone would add another $18,000 to the bill.

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Topics: Wayne County
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