Saturday, December 07, 2019
Hawai'i Free Press

Current Articles | Archives

Saturday, November 30, 2019
Auditor: City Still not Collecting Property Taxes from Commercial Lessees of Government Land
By News Release @ 4:47 PM :: 454 Views :: Honolulu County, DHHL, Taxes

Follow-Up on Recommendations from Report No. 12-03, Audit of the City's Real Property Tax Delinquency Collection

From Honolulu City Auditor, November 25, 2019 (excerpts)

Background The Audit of the City’s Real Property Tax Delinquency Collection (Report 12-03, issued March 2012), was a self-initiated audit that addressed concerns about projected increases in delinquent receivables and inadequate reporting regarding the city’s delinquent property tax collection program. The audit objective was to review and assess the city’s real property tax delinquency collection process. To assess the program, we evaluated the effectiveness of management practices for collecting real property delinquent taxes.

In Report 12-03, the audit identified issues that prevented the city from reducing real property tax delinquencies through effective, timely, and efficient collection. A number of long-term, large dollar amount delinquencies were caused by the city’s inability to collect from government-owned land lessees. The city received little or nothing in return for its resources and collection efforts because the city was limited in its options to collect from lessees and could not foreclose on government owned property if its lessee failed to pay the city’s assessed taxes. To facilitate collection of taxes and timely actions against lessees of government lands, the city would need to develop memoranda of agreements with other government entities for sharing lessee and lease information.

The audit also concluded that delinquent tax collection amounts for private properties were increasing because land owners were allowed to remain on payment plans indefinitely. We also found that the chronically delinquent knew how to avoid the foreclosure process by paying the minimum property tax amount necessary to avoid triggering the foreclosure process. In addition, improvements in city policies and procedures could improve delinquent tax collections and the accuracy of delinquency tax data. Establishing categories for written-off and uncollectible accounts and moving these accounts to a separate list could improve the accuracy of the delinquent tax totals. Establishing a list of written-off and uncollectible accounts could be used by city staff to deny city services and benefits to delinquent taxpayers and serve as an incentive to pay delinquent taxes, provided that due process, administrative, and appeal procedures related to the denial are in place.

The audit made 11 recommendations to improve delinquency collections. Since the original report was issued in 2012, our office has periodically monitored the status of the report’s recommendation by requesting the Department of Budget and Fiscal Services (BFS) to report on the status of the audit recommendations. In the FY 2012, FY 2014 and FY 2017 status recommendation reports, we noted that BFS had not-started any of the 11 recommendations. Based on this and the period of time that has transpired since the audit was completed, we determined that a follow-up audit should be performed to verify that status of the outstanding recommendations….

  *   *   *   *   *

Recommendation 1 – In Process

Negotiate a Memorandum of Agreement with the State of Hawai‘i that provides for the timely exchange of lessee information on government lands and permits the city and county access to State of Hawai‘i databases that allow the city staff to take timely actions in filing liens against delinquent lessees.

STATUS UPDATE

Management made efforts to obtain information from the state. On September 19, 2012, the former governor issued an Executive Memorandum requesting that the state provide the city with timely information regarding non-residential leases with commercial tenants that have a term in excess of one year. The memorandum specifies that all state agencies that issue leases, licenses, permits, or other dispositions for non-residential real property to tenants who will use the property for commercial purposes, where the lease continue a period of one year or more, shall provide the city and counties worksheet information on an annual basis by September 30th of each year. According to BFS, since 2013, the state has not upheld its commitment to provide annual worksheets and timely information to the city.

NEXT STEPS

We recommend that BFS work with the state to ensure compliance with the memorandum. Absent timely and accurate delinquency information, the city remains unable to effectively collect back payments and penalties from government-owned land lessees….

Response from City Managing Director Roy Amemiya:  “Budget and Fiscal Services considers Recommendation 1 resolved and will not take further action as an Executive Memorandum of Agreement by the former Governor was issued September 19, 2012.  BFS continues to pursue resolutions with various State Agencies regarding the timely information on non-residential leases with commercial tenants whose lease terms are in excess of one year. “ ….

read … Full Report

Links

TEXT "follow HawaiiFreePress" to 40404

Register to Vote

2aHawaii

808 Silent Majority

808 State Update AM940

ABCDEFG Blog

ACA Signups Hawaii

ACCE

ALEC

Alliance Defending Freedom

Aloha Life Advocates

Aloha Pregnancy Care Center

American Council of Trustees and Alumni

American Mothers of Hawaii

AMVETS-Hawaii

AntiPlanner

Antonio Gramsci Reading List

A Place for Women in Waipio

Audit The Rail

Ballotpedia Hawaii

Better Hawaii 

Blaisdell Memorial Project

Broken Trust 

Build More Hawaiian Homes Working Group

CAFR Hawaii

Castaway Conservative

Children's Alliance Hawaii

Children's Rights Institute

ChinaTownWatch.com

Christian Homeschoolers of Hawaii

Citizens for Recall

Cliff Slater's Second Opinion

Coffee Break

CSIS Pacific Forum

DAR Hawaii

DeedySupport.com

DVids Hawaii

E Hana Kakou Kelii Akina

E Māua Ola i Moku o Keawe

Farmers For Choice Hawaii

FIRE

Fix Oahu!

Follow the Money Hawaii

Frank in Hawaii

Front Page Magazine

Frontline: The Fixers

Genetic Literacy Project

Get Off Your Butts!

God, Freedom, America

Grassroot Institute

Habele.org

Hawaii Aganst Assisted Suicide

Hawaii Aquarium Fish Report

Hawaii Aviation Preservation Society

Hawaii Catholic TV

Hawaii Christian Coalition

Hawaii Cigar Association

Hawaii Coalition Against Legalized Gambling

Hawaii ConCon Info

Hawaii Credit Union Watch

Hawaii Crime Victims' Rights

Hawaii Crop Improvement Association

Hawaii Debt Clock

Hawaii Defending Marriage

Hawaii Defense Foundation

Hawaii Families for Educational Choice

Hawaii Family Advocates

Hawaii Family Forum

Hawaii Farmers and Ranchers United

Hawaii Farmer's Daughter

Hawaii Federalist Society

Hawaii Federation of Republican Women

Hawaii Firearm Community

Hawaii Fishermen's Alliance

Hawaii Future Project

Hawaii Gathering of Eagles

Hawaii History Blog

Hawaii Homeschool Association

Hawaii Jihadi Trial

Hawaii March for Life

Hawaii Meth Project

Hawaii's Partnership for Appropriate & Compassionate Care

Hawaii Public Charter School Network

Hawaii Rifle Association

Hawaii Right to Life -- Big Island

Hawaii Right to Life -- Oahu

Hawaii Shield Law Coalition

Hawaii Shippers Council

Hawaii Smokers Alliance

Hawaii State Data Lab

Hawaii Together

Heritage Foundation

HI Coalition Against Legalized Gambling

HIEC.Coop 

HiFiCo

Hiram Fong Papers

Homeschool Legal Defense Hawaii

Honolulu Homeless Crisis

Honolulu Navy League

Honolulu Traffic

Horns of Jericho Blog

House Minority Blog

House Republican Caucus YouTube

HPACC

Hump Day Report

I Vote Hawaii

If Hawaii News

Imua TMT

Inouye-Kwock, NYT 1992

Inside the Nature Conservancy

Inverse Condemnation

Investigative Project on Terrorism

Iowa Meets Maui

Jackson v Abercrombie

Jihad Watch

Judgepedia Hawaii

July 4 in Hawaii

Kahle v New Hope

Kakaako Cares

Kau TEA Party

Kauai Co GOP

Keep Hawaii's Heroes

KeyWiki

Land and Power in Hawaii

Legislative Committee Analysis Tool

Lessons in Firearm Education

Lingle Years

Malulani Foundation

Managed Care Matters -- Hawaii

Malama Pregnancy Center of Maui

Mauna Kea Recreational Users Group

MentalIllnessPolicy.org

Middle East Forum--The Legal Project

Mililani Conservatives for Change

Military Home Educators' Network Oahu

Missile Defense Advocacy

MIS Veterans Hawaii

Muslim Brotherhood in America

NAMI Hawaii

NARTH

Natatorium.org

National Christian Foundation Hawaii

National Parents Org Hawaii

National Wind Watch

New Zeal

NFIB Hawaii News

No GMO Means No Aloha

Northwest Economic Policy Seminar

Not Dead Yet, Hawaii

Now What I Really Think

NRA-ILA Hawaii

Oahu Alternative Transport

ObamaCare Abortion Hawaii

Obookiah

OHA Lies

Opt Out Today

OurFutureHawaii.com

Pacific Aviation Museum

Patients Rights Council Hawaii

PEACE Hawaii

People vs Machine

Pritchett Cartoons 

Pro-GMO Hawaii

P.U.E.O.

RailRipoff.com

Rental by Owner Awareness Assn

Republican Party -- Hawaii State

Research Institute for Hawaii USA

Rick Hamada Show

RJ Rummel

Robotics Organizing Committee

Salvage The Rail

Save the Plastic Bag

School Choice in Hawaii

SenatorFong.com

SIFE Remington

SIFE W. Oahu 

Sink the Jones Act

Smart About Marijuana--Hawaii

St Marianne Cope

State Budget Solutions Hawaii

State Policy Network

Statehood for Guam

Tax Foundation of Hawaii

The Harriet Tubman Agenda

The Long War Journal

The Real Hanabusa

Time Out Honolulu

Truth About Trade & Technology - Hawaii

UCC Truths

Union Members Know Your Rights

US Tax Foundation Hawaii Info

Valor in the Pacific

VAREP Honolulu

Waagey.org

West Maui Taxpayers Association

What Natalie Thinks

Whole Life Hawaii

Yes2TMT