Town of Salina
Following the lead of towns such as Pompey and Cicero, the town of Salina has unveiled an online tax portal.
The portal is live now, but residents can only view past tax bills at this point. Starting in January 2018, homeowners will be able to pay online via credit card, debit card or electronic check.
“I’m excited that it’s finally here,” said Alicia MacCollum, Salina’s receiver of taxes.
MacCollum said the town has been researching the possibility of electronic tax payments for a couple of years. The online payment and records system will be available through Business Automation Services (BAS), a municipal software company based in Clifton Park. Cicero and Pompey use BAS as well. MacCollum said the town of Camillus is also contemplating an online tax portal.
“We’re trying to streamline things,” MacCollum said.
While many residents prefer to pay in person, the ability to pay online will be more convenient for those who can’t make it to the tax office. The portal also allows residents to research five years of past tax bills.
“It will alleviate some of the phone calls because if they use the real time [tax bill feature] they will be able to see if it’s paid or not,” MacCollum said. “It should alleviate a lot of the duplicate payments, and we do get a lot of them.”
Of course, electronic payments do come with a non-refundable convenience fee (see sidebar). If someone must withdraw a duplicate payment, they do not get the convenience fee back.
They would be handled just like a returned check fee if they removed their payments
MacCollum said that paying online or in person are both secure options. Her office does not accept credit card payments over the phone.
“We want to make sure we’re doing everything properly,” MacCollum said. “We don’t want any risk of any theft.”
Ashley M. Casey is a reporter for The Baldwinsville Messenger and The Eagle Star-Review. She graduated from Le Moyne College in 2012 and previously worked for the Scotsman Press.