Fulton County Waives Penalties as Tag Problems Persist

One county has decided drivers should not have to pay late fees in the wake of continued problems with tag renewal notifications.

Fulton County Commissioners passed a resolution Wednesday that allows the Fulton Tax Commissioner to waive penalties and interest for those affected.

The problem first came to light when people with October birthdays reported their renewal notices had not arrived in the mail. In the past, those notices were sent out 30-45 days prior to their due date.

World Marketing, the company the state contracted with to send those notices, filed for bankruptcy and stopped operations.

Fulton County Commissioner Bob Ellis said he did not know just how many people had been impacted until last week.

“I began to get calls and say, ‘Hey, I just got my bill in the mail and you know, it’s past due,'” said Ellis, who sponsored the resolution. “This just doesn’t seem fair.”

Those bills came from a new company the state chose to take over the job. That company, however, is still trying to catch up. Many people with November birthdays said they have yet to receive their renewal notices.

Fulton County reports another problem with the new notices–the return envelopes enclosed for some customers to mail their payments do not fully show the tax commissioner’s address, which means they cannot be delivered.

“There’s some risk that those might get returned,” Ellis explained.

To tackle both issues, Fulton County said drivers whose tag renewals are due between October 1 and November 31, 2015 may complete an affidavit stating that they either did not receive their notice on time or mailed their payment in a faulty envelope.

Car owners will not be responsible for any late fees as long as they pay their ad valorem tax and tag fee in full within 60 days of the original deadline.

A spokesperson for the Georgia Department of Revenue said they were not aware of any other counties that had passed similar measures.

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