The city’s Tax Collector has alerted residents a program to get tax scofflaws paid up will be reinstituted beginning April 15. The “Boot Program” will be instituted that date, and will mean those who owe taxes will be unable to use their vehicles until overdue taxes are paid.
Used at least twice in the last decade, the program has reduced the number of those who have not paid their motor vehicle taxes or other taxes, and will use the latest technology to search out and “boot” those who owe city levies.
Newly elected Tax Collector Dorothy Chambrelli is planning an aggressive campaign for collecting taxes.
“Please do not ignore your taxes; everyone must do their part,” Chambrelli said. “Your failure to pay negatively affects the entire city.”
City residents who are delinquent on their motor vehicle taxes are urged to pay their overdue taxes before the “boot” program begins April 15 or risk their vehicles being immobilized with a wheel-locking boot.
TaxServ Capital Services LLC of Hartford is the city’s vendor that administers the program in cooperation with Vioalert Systems LLC of West Haven.
Taxpayers can check if they owe back taxes and pay online by going to www.cityofwesthaven.com and clicking on Tax Collector under the Government heading. They can also pay in person in the tax office on the first floor of City Hall, 355 Main St.
A vehicle-mounted ID system that is part of the boot program uses an infrared license plate scanner to target tax scofflaws. Vehicles are released of the boot once their owners pay all back taxes and boot fees.
Taxes accrue additional interest on the first day of each month.
The program has been as controversial as it has been effective. The use of the “boot” has produced many taxpayers who object to what they see as burdensome tactics to collect overdue levies.
With the city under the oversight of the Municipal Accountability Review Board since it undertook to pay down its $16 million deficit by bonding, every effort to extract due revenues is being exercised.