By MELINDA WILLIAMS
Pulaski residents can put their window scrapers back in the drawer because it looks like permanent auto decals will be sticking around.
Pulaski Town Council took no action Tuesday night on an agenda item to consider reverting back to issuance of annual decals.
Discussion about possibly returning to annual decals arose last year when Pulaski Finance Director Sherry Boyd pointed out the value of delinquent personal property taxes has almost doubled since the town went to a permanent decal in 2009. She said she attributes the delinquencies largely to the change.
When residents were required to place a new decal on their vehicle each year, they weren’t able to purchase a decal until their personal property taxes were paid in full. However, in 2009 town council decided to switch to a permanent decal and place the auto registration fee on the tax bill instead.
According to a report Boyd provided to council, the value of delinquent personal property taxes increased from $15,373 in 2009 to $28,142 in 2011. Delinquent decal fees increased from $33,657 to $49,066.
Boyd recommended returning to annual decals to help improve revenues to meet 2013-14 budgetary needs. However, most council members said they would rather find additional means of collecting the delinquent taxes.
Councilman Jamie Radcliffe said last year that while he dislikes auto decals, as a law enforcement officer, he thinks they are the simplest method of ensuring taxes and licensing fees are collected.
Tuesday night, council voted to have the town finance department start using the Virginia Department of Taxation Debt Setoff program to capture tax returns and lottery winnings from those who owe taxes.