Dane County plans to give local governments the choice of delaying property tax due dates until October, Dane County Executive Joe Parisi announced Monday.

Municipalities could waive interest and penalties on 2020 property tax installment payments due and payable after April 1 until Oct. 1.

According to a county news release on Monday, May 4, state legislation enacted last month authorized counties to offer payment flexibility for people struggling to keep up with expenses during the COVID-19 pandemic.

According to the Dane County Treasurer’s office, all that is required for annual property tax payments is that the first installment be paid by Jan. 31; usually about one-half of the total due. For those who choose to pay in two installments, the second installment is due by July 31.

“Many in Dane County are currently experiencing financial hardships, and we want to do as much as we can to help our residents and families make ends meet during the COVID-19 pandemic,” Parisi said in the news release. “By giving local governments the opportunity to delay property tax due dates, we hope to help residents feel relief and get more time and flexibility to meet this expense.”

A resolution to allow local governments to implement this delay was approved Monday night by the county Finance Committee.

On April 15, the Wisconsin Legislature enacted 2019 Wisconsin Act 185, allowing counties to adopt resolutions enabling taxation districts to waive interest and penalties on 2020 property tax installment payments due and payable after April 1 until Oct. 1.

A resolution authorizing the waiver must also establish criteria for determining hardship to qualify for waiver, according to the county news release. The county’s authorization for a municipality to implement the waiver is contingent on it adopting a resolution similar to the county’s.

Municipalities would need to pass a resolution similar to the county’s before property tax due dates can be pushed back to Oct. 1, however, so ultimately, they have discretion whether the payment is delayed.

Email Unified Newspaper Group reporter Scott De Laruelle at scott.delaruelle@wcinet.com.