Property Tax Division
To administer accurately and efficiently the billing, collection and reporting of property tax revenues levied as directed by California State Law and County Ordinances and assist the public with understanding property tax information in a prompt, efficient and courteous manner.
California State law prescribes that all real estate owners pay property tax to support local public services such as schools, law enforcement, fire protection and general government administration. The property tax is calculated based on the following formula:
(Property Value - Exempt Amount) x Tax Rate + Direct Assessments = Property Tax
Three county offices handle the property tax administration:
1) Assessor's Office
The Assessor's Office maintains all records related to the value of each parcel of property and the degree to which the property may be exempt from taxes. The Assessor's Office has a number assigned to each parcel of land and also maintains addresses for the location of the parcel and for the owner's billing. The Assessor's Office processes and maintains files on homeowner's exemption claims, Williamson Act parcels and other special exemptions. Whenever there is a change in ownership of real estate or a change to the real estate (such as a pool addition, segregation or new construction), there will be a change in the value of the property. If the value increases, a supplemental tax bill will be produced. A decrease in value will result in paid taxes being refunded or a reduction of taxes owing.
2) Auditor-Controller's Office
The Auditor/Controller's Office applies the various tax rates to each parcel and calculates the property tax that is owed on each parcel of land. The base rate is 1.0%. By a vote of the people, school construction bonds or other indebtedness can increase that rate to pay for the approved project. The Auditor-Controller's Office also adds any direct assessments for services supplied directly to the property owner such as lighting, special district fire protection or mosquito abatement. Special direct assessments related to paying off indebtedness for a public agency issuing Mello Roos or Mark Roos bonds (to fund community improvements) may also appear as part of the tax amount owed.
3) Treasurer/Tax Collector's
Once the tax amount for each parcel is computed, the Treasurer/Tax Collector's Office takes the information from the other two Offices so that tax bills may be printed and mailed out to the owner of record (in the Assessor's Office files). The deadline for mailing the regular annual tax bills is November 1 and normally reflects ownership of the parcel through the previous August 1 only. The tax bills show that the regular annual tax amount must be paid in at least two installments: the first half by December 10th and the second half by April 10th. There is NO other mailing for the regular notice. Purchasers of property will NOT receive the billing of the full value of the property until ONE YEAR AFTER THE PURCHASE IS MADE. PROPERTY OWNERS WHO DO NOT RECEIVE ANY TAX BILLING ARE STILL OBLIGATED TO PAY PROPERTY TAXES ON PARCELS BY THE DEADLINES PRESCRIBED BY LAW. Taxpayers may contact the Treasurer/Tax Collector's Office for the amount owing. There is a 10% penalty (or late fee) if the tax amounts are paid after the deadline dates (and $10 in costs added if the April 10th installment is paid late). If a tax amount is still unpaid after June 30, additional charges at the rate of 1.5% per month (18% per year) are added until the full amount is paid. Penalties are in place to discourage non-payment and to encourage timely payment. Any tax left unpaid for a period of five years or more subjects the parcel to sale at a public auction so that the County can recoup the tax money due. Public entities cannot deny public services (such as law enforcement or fire protection) to anyone and the entities depend on the full amount of taxes being paid to provide the public with the services that are often mandated by State law. Any change in ownership or value will trigger a supplemental tax bill. The State of Californias Homeowners assistance program for Senior Citizens, Blind or Disabled persons has been suspended by the State of CA. Please visit their website at http://www.sco.ca.gov/
For more details of many of the basic State laws related to property tax administration, see California Revenue and Taxation Code sections 11 through 4180 in law books at the Law Library or access through the Internet at www.leginfo.ca.gov
View or Pay Property Taxes
(Requires parcel number which can be found on your Tax bill)
- E-mail the Tax Collection Division at: email@example.com
- or the Tax Auction Administrator at: firstname.lastname@example.org
- or the Treasurer/Tax Collector at: email@example.com
- By Phone: (209) 525-6388 ( Monday-Friday, 8:00 a.m. - 5:00 p.m. )
- By Fax: (209) 525-7868
- In Person: 1010 Tenth Street, Suite 2500, Modesto, CA 95354
Questions or comments about this site may be sent to firstname.lastname@example.org