Before you mail in your Fulton County property taxes for the last half of 2009 (payable 2010), make sure you look at the return envelope.
It might bear the name of Irma Celestino, Sandusky County treasurer, rather than Bev Schlosser, treasurer of Fulton County.
Schlosser said there was a problem at the commercial firm that prints tax bills for several surrounding counties,
resulting in Fulton County property owners receiving return envelopes for Sandusky County.
“When they started running our bills, they still had some Sandusky County return envelopes in the hopper of the machine that stuffs the envelopes,” Schlosser said.
She said at first, it was believed that only a few bills went out with the wrong envelopes, but further investigation revealed, “it was a whole lot more than 500.”
She attributed the problem to human error at the printing company.
“Our envelopes are exactly alike, same type face, everything, even the same color– red for first half, blue for second. Maybe I should change to some other color like orange,” she said.
The bills were mailed out on Wednesday, Jan 20. On Thursday, Jan. 21, the Swanton library called to report the problem.
“That’s when we started the investigation process,” she said.
If you receive a property tax bill with the Sandusky County return envelope, Schlosser asks that you use a new, blank envelope, and write her address on it: Fulton County Treasurer, 152 S. Fulton St., Suite 155, Wauseon, Ohio, 43567.
Schlosser called Celestino and discussed the situation.
“Irma was not aware of the problem. She said she would forward any (Fulton County) payments she receives,” Schlosser said.
Will the delay in routing Fulton County property tax payments to Sandusky County, then back to Fulton, cause financial problems for Fulton County?
Schlosser didn’t think so. “Her due date is exactly the same as ours, Feb. 12. It would have been great if hers had been earlier,” she said.
Schlosser said the billing contractor has printed and mailed Fulton County tax bills for five years without a problem.
She declined to name the firm, saying she did not want to smear the firm’s name over a human error.
“They service 25 or 30 counties. We save quite a bit with them, because they can purchase paper and envelopes so much cheaper.
“The vendor has agreed to cover the costs (of the mistake), and they’re not charging us a service charge.
“Someone made a mistake,” she said.–David Pugh