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Changes coming to vehicle registration, tax payment process

 

SARAH LOWERY

Staff Writer

 

The Lincoln County Tax Administrator’s Office issued a notice Thursday alerting citizens to impending changes to the way they register and pay taxes on their vehicles.

The changes will take effect as of July 1, resulting from a new state law passed by the North Carolina General Assembly to create a “Tag and Tax System.” The intent is to combine motor-vehicle registration renewal and property-tax collection, with the North Carolina Division of Motor Vehicles administering the combined system.

With the change, Lincoln County, and all other counties in the state, will bill and collect motor-vehicle taxes after July 1.

“Some people may be caught off guard with this change because they may have to pay their vehicle tax earlier this year,” Tax Administrator Kep Kepley said in the release. “In the future, it will be easier because both the vehicle registration and tax will be due the same month each year.”

Under the old system, vehicle registration and taxes were processed separately. Rather than receiving a notice for registration renewal and three months later receiving a notice regarding tax payment, vehicle owners will now receive a new combined notice that includes both, due at the same time.

The change will be phased in, affecting vehicle owners differently depending on when their vehicle registration expires. Meanwhile, the county will continue to send out tax notices for vehicles with registration renewals due before July 1. Those taxes will be due four months after the vehicle registration is due.

For vehicle registrations due on or after July 1, the state will send a combined notice, with those payments due the month the registration is due.

If the prior year tax has not been paid, it will have to be paid at the tax office prior to renewal. Also at the time of renewal, the current year tax will be due and payable at the motor vehicle license plat agency.

For more information, contact the Lincoln County Tax Department at (704) 736-8555.

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