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King County homeowners could get property tax extension past June 1

King County Councilmember Reagan Dunn introduced legislation that would give homeowners the option to pay property taxes over six months.

KING COUNTY, Wash. — King County Councilmember Reagan Dunn introduced legislation Wednesday that would offer additional tax relief for homeowners affected by the coronavirus pandemic.

His proposal would give taxpayers the option to make smaller property tax payments over six months, rather than a lump sum on June 1. 

Under the proposal, property tax bills could be split into five payments with the first payment of first-half taxes due June 30 and first payment of second-half taxes due Nov. 30.

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“In our current crisis, a mere delay on property taxes isn’t enough to meet the great financial need of many King County residents,” Dunn said. “We should act now to help taxpayers who are doing everything they can to make ends meet, but still face a due-in-full property tax bill even as the economic fallout intensifies.” 

On March 30, King County Executive Dow Constantine extended the due date for the first half of 2020 property taxes from April 30 to June 1. The order applied to individual and residential taxpayers who pay property taxes themselves, rather than through a mortgage lender. 

"Many homeowners are facing extraordinary financial challenges during this public health emergency," Constantine said at the time. "My order provides short-term relief for individual taxpayers who own residential or commercial property, while allowing the state, county, cities and special purpose districts to continue meeting community needs as we all pull together to get through this unprecedented crisis."

Dunn's legislation would affect property tax payments for the first and second half of 2020 and 2021, extending up to six months past the due date. 

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Dunn's officer sites the downturn of economic activity and increase in unemployment due to Washington's stay-home order to curb the spread of the coronavirus pandemic as the reason for the payment extension.

The legislation will be introduced to the full King County Council May 26. 

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