Missing cheque results in tax penalties cancelled

Missing cheque results in tax penalties cancelled

County of Wetaskiwin will use new system for post-dated cheques

The County of Wetaskiwin decided to change the way it handles post-dated cheques from ratepayers after considering the issue at their Sept. 26 regular meeting.

CAO Rod Hawken brought forward a request from a ratepayer who said he left a post-dated cheque at the county office, which went missing, and the ratepayer was eventually hit with late charges for unpaid taxes.

“On September 18, 2019 the County of Wetaskiwin received a phone call from Joel Bishop requesting Council to forgive the September 1st penalty on his property legally described as SE 10-47-24-W4M – Plan 1521475; Block 2; Lot 7 in the amount of $159.63.

“Joel stated that he brought a postdated cheque into the County office in June 2019.

“Neither County administration nor Joel Bishop have proof that the payment was received.

“The process when receiving postdated cheques has been to put them in a file folder at the front counter and enter them into the system at a later date; once entering the payment the receipts are held until the payments have been processed and sent to the bank on the 31st of August.

“A change in the process of dealing with postdated cheques has been developed and implemented as a result of this issue. This process will now see the post dated payment entered into the system upon delivery and a post dated receipt will be provided immediately.”

Hawken noted the Bishops had supplied the county with a statutory oath document stating they had dropped off the post-dated cheque at the county office.

Councilor Kathy Rooyakkers stated this new way of doing things is the way it should have been done all along.

Councilor Ken Adair asked if Joel Bishop has a good history of paying taxes, to which Hawken answered, “Yes.”

Councilors voted in favor of cancelling the penalties applied to Bishop’s property taxes.

Stu.salkeld@pipestoneflyer.ca