Nampa--Owners of 58 Ada and Canyon county properties have been warned that they now face the possibility that their properties might be sold at public auction because the owners have failed to pay a total of $27,830 in irrigation taxes for the past three years, officials with the Nampa & Meridian Irrigation District advised today.
“There are delinquent taxes of $9,293 on 17 Canyon county properties and $18,537 on 41 properties in Ada County that have not been paid since 2015. As required by state law the District has started tax deed action against the properties which potentially could mean the properties would be sold at public auction to recover the unpaid taxes,” said Rachelle Duvall, NMID Senior Collection Clerk.
NMID mailed certified letters in August to the last known address of all the delinquent property owners officially notifying them that unless they pay at least their 2015 taxes by December 31 their properties will be put up for sale at public auction.
However, 26 property owners did not accept the certified letters nor have they paid any of their delinquent tax bills. To warn them about the tax deed action, the District is publishing legal notices containing their names and the properties involved once each week for four weeks in local newspapers. A final warning regarding the delinquent taxes went out by mail late last week.
“We strongly urge people who may have received delinquent tax notices or who may have questions about their NMID irrigation taxes to call the District office at (208) 466-7861 without delay,” Duvall added.
The State requires irrigation districts to initiate the tax deed action if the property owners have failed to pay their irrigation taxes for the past three years. In this instance, the unpaid taxes are for 2015.
“Tax deed action is the most distressing action we are required to take against land owned by our patrons. It represents a last-ditch measure the District goes to great length to prevent but which state law demands if the taxes are not paid,” according to Daren Coon, NMID Secretary-Treasurer. “Fortunately these properties represent just a tiny percentage of the 41,000 property owners in the District.”
If the property owners do not pay at least their delinquent 2015 tax bill, their property may be sold at auction next August for the dollar amount of taxes owing, plus additional legal and administrative fees. Most property owners pay up prior to that but each year some properties are eventually sold at auction, Coon added. One property was sold at auction this year.
With so many newcomers to the area, Coon noted the problem sometimes happens because property owners think they do not need to pay the annual assessment because they do not receive or use irrigation water. In other cases, property owners assume the irrigation tax payment is part of their escrow tax payment being made by the mortgage company but it is not.
The taxes pay for operation and maintenance of the canals, laterals, drains, and dams that make up the District's water delivery system. Levies also are assessed against individual subdivision parcels using pressurized irrigation systems in subdivisions around the valley.
The Nampa & Meridian Irrigation District is a water storage, conveyance and distribution system founded in 1904. NMID supplies irrigation water to than 17,000 individual parcels of land, including 479 subdivisions in Ada and Canyon counties.