TABLES 1 - 6
Collections data are obtained from county treasurers for all taxing districts imposing an ad valorem property tax, either authorized by statute or approved by voters. Special benefit assessments levied on other than an ad valorem basis are not included.
PROPERTY TAXES DUE IN 1998 (TABLES 1 AND 2)
Property taxes levied in 1997 and due in 1998 were $4,698 million, increasing $144.2 million, or 3.2 percent, from the amount due in 1997. Collections of taxes due in 1998 totaled $4,546 million, increasing $139.3 million, or 3.2 percent, from 1997. The collection response rate in 1998 of 96.8 percent was unchanged from 1997.
During the year, tax roll cancellations (transfer to exempt status, correction of errors, destroyed property, and uncollectible accounts) exceeded tax roll additions (omitted property, property removed from exempt status, and new structures not previously on the rolls) by $6.3 million. The resulting year-end unpaid balance was $146 million, up $9.9 million from 1997. This amount equaled 3 percent of the 1998 tax roll.
Garfield County led all counties last year with a 99.1 percent collection response, followed by Walla Walla County with 97.9 percent, and Columbia and King Counties with 97.6 percent. All together, 33 counties reported a collections rate of 95 percent or above, with 6 counties collecting between 90 and 95 percent.
DELINQUENT PROPERTY TAXES (TABLES 3 AND 4)
Delinquent taxes (taxes on the rolls previous to the 1998 tax year) were $212.85 million. Of this amount, plus additions, $131 million was collected during the year. The statewide response rate is 61.6 percent.
Thirty-six counties had a 50 percent or better collection rate in 1998 compared to 35 in 1997 and 34 in 1996. For 1998 13 counties had delinquent collection rates greater than 60 percent. Three counties collected less than 50 percent of their delinquent tax rolls.
CURRENT AND DELINQUENT PROPERTY TAXES (TABLES 5 AND 6)
The combined amount of current and delinquent taxes due in 1998 was $4,911.1 million. Collections totaled $4,677 million, 95.2 percent of the total due. At the end of 1998, delinquent taxes were $225 million, up $12 million, an increase of 5.7 percent from 1997. Although the collection of current taxes was 96.8 percent (as noted above), the collection rate was 99.5 percent of current roll, taking into account both current and delinquent taxes.