STONINGTON — Those in the community who have been financially impacted by the COVID-19 crisis have an opportunity to use a tax relief program implemented by the town in mid-April, but a limited number of taxpayers have applied so far.
Stonington had received just 11 requests for exceptions as part of the program as of Wednesday afternoon. The tax relief program, which was announced on April 16, offers those who have had their income impacted by virus restrictions a 90-day deferral of taxes on real property, personal property and motor vehicles.
The program also offers a deferral of municipal water, sewer and electric bills for residents and business owners as needed.
"This is only one step in what will be a long recovery. We want to do everything possible to help residents and local businesses, while at the same time still have the necessary revenue to meet our financial obligations,” First Selectman Danielle Chesebrough said.
Under Executive Order 7S, which was passed on April 1, state municipalities were required to choose to implement either a deferment program, low-interest rate program, or both. The purpose of the order is to provide temporary tax forbearance of property tax collection and/or reduced interest on delinquent tax payments to property owners facing certain conditions.
Stonington was one of the first municipalities to implement the order, choosing to offer residents a deferment option. Those seeking to receive deferment have until July 1 to apply.
To aid the community, officials are requesting that any taxpayer with the means to pay their full taxes during the July installment do so at their earliest convenience. Those payments will help to ease cash flow challenges during the deferment period.
Applications may be found on the town's website, stonington-ct.gov, and on the town's Facebook page. Completed applications may be placed in the drop box outside Stonington Town Hall, emailed to firstname.lastname@example.org or mailed to Tax Collector, 152 Elm St., Stonington, CT 06378.
For more information, call 860-535-5080.
— Jason Vallee