County tells delinquent taxpayers to pay up

Apr 3, 2013


Excerpt: Erie County commissioners Bill Monaghan and Pat Shenigo got a huge assist last year from Jim Rokakis, the former Cuyahoga County treasurer who currently serves as director of Thriving Communities Institute, which supports land bank programs throughout Ohio.

Rokakis helped establish the Erie County Land Bank and the state awarded the county about $473,000 to demolish abandoned structures on blighted properties. The county land bank program also puts teeth into the efforts to force delinquent property owners to make decisions about their properties and become responsible as land owners. 

We never understood why other county officials were so reluctant previously to push people to pay what they owe in back taxes, but were glad that reluctance — whether it was personal or politics — was beaten down.

If it has the desired outcome, better collections of delinquent property taxes will help restore diminished revenue and the land bank will put the demolition program for abandoned and vacant properties in high gear.

Protecting neighborhoods from blight has always been an important responsibility; we're pleased it has finally become a priority for county officials.


Julie R.

Does this mean the county is going after your prosecutor for the back taxes he never had to pay?


Yeah right?!


I pay taxes, so should everyone, Has Fred Fox of Huron paid his? They need the taxes to pay for that mess he made.


The prosecutor is Monaghan's brother in law! PAY YOUR TAXES PEOPLE!


TAX MAN... F YOU TAX MAN! I will never pay taxes! Not in this corrupt nation....i will pay taxes when this military indurstrial machine comes grinding to a halt and tax money goes back into the country instead of blowing up men, women, and children in foriegn lands. Our infrasturcter is mid 1900 to say the least....our poverty level is 1960 and we think we should have over 900 military bases in over 130 countries and are ready to go to war with Iran because they have WEAPONS OF MASS DESTRUCTION! Sounds like good ol' George W. when we went into Iraq. All you happy sheep, pay your taxes, vote for the two party Oligarchy and continue to drink the cool-aid.....when this fiat economy implodes and this society breaks down you will wish you spent that tax money to perpare for this coming take NWO take over....go ahead and laugh...i doubt you spent any time at all studying what is really going on in this world. Ignorance is bliss till bliss is gone...destroyed...unattainable..then all that is left is Truth!


@bulldog....That is Federal Income tax....this is about local land tax which has nothing whatsoever to do with the military, weapons of mass destruction or war. Yes, ignorance is bliss, but you need to check and see just exactly what tax you are paying and where that goes before you go off on a tax. One has nothing to do with the other. Land tax isn't Federal tax.


Some play games though with this as well. As long as they are paying although not fully the county can not foreclose on the property. So some dribble in the $$$$ in paying. Staying just enough and not being too far back that they become subject to state law on foreclosure.

There is a house close to me. They have 3 garages and those you can see have the jet ski, motorcycle, rider mower, SUV, BMW car, you know all the toys. You guessed it they are always behind in property taxes and stay just out of range of the law coming into to repo the house.

AND YES "Queenjhb" Mr Fox has paid his property taxes....infact don't believe me check it for yourself and anyone else you want to check. Go to

Put the owner's name in or address and bring up the property listing and look at the top for TAX and click on it and you wil see if paid. You will be surprised at some who collect tax money in salaries who are NOT paid and it is is not Mr Fox,,,,,,,,,,he pays his taxes !!!

Julie R.

Don't rely too much on the auditor's online records and for sure don't rely on the recorder's. Those records are misleading as all get-out. I think I already showed how they cover up fraud on property, not that it much matters. Title companies don't rely on those online records, anyway.


@ gardenman: Thankyou


Again - some people choose not to pay their taxes and pay enough to keep their name out of the newspaper or to be foreclosed on. I know people who, like garden man above, have CP season passes, big parties, buy expensive clothes, toys, campers, boats, but don't have the money for their taxes. Wants versus needs. I pay my bills and I don't have the toys and what do I get? A least a good conscience. Those people don't see it that way. Go after them!


A neighbor of mine owes $6,000 in back taxes, he pays $100.00 now & then on it for years now, how is that possible? [ thanks again Gardenman,wow what an eye opener]

The Big Dog's back

C'mon teabaggers, ante up.

"Baxter, one of 21 investors in the boat line, said he has asked Chief Assistant Criminal Prosecutor Mary Ann Barylski to start paperwork to get special counsel for the county to handle the tax issue. Baxter's office provides legal counsel to Erie County Treasurer Jo Dee Fantozz and Auditor Jude Hammond, who deal with property tax issues."
"Island Express Boat Lines also faces possible legal action because of delinquent property taxes of at least $111,000 as of August, Erie County Auditor Jude Hammond and Treasurer Jo Dee Fantozz have said previously. Baxter previously has said he would seek a special prosecutor to handle the case and any cases involving business competitors to the Island Rocket ferries."

Possible legal action? Special prosecutor?

Julie R.

"Baxter's office provides legal counsel to Erie County Treasurer Jo Dee Fantozz and Auditor Jude Hammond, who deal with property tax issues."

So does that mean before the Auditor of a county can authorize a fraudulent transfer of property under a forged Power of Attorney concealed in another county, the Auditor has to clear it first with Kevin Baxter?

"Erie County officials recently wrote off $808,000 in personal property taxes that went uncollected for years."

"The first account to be written off -- the first in more than eight years, according to Fantozz -- was a nearly $200,000 delinquency from Island Express Boat Lines, Ltd., a limited liability company Erie County prosecutor Kevin Baxter and others formed in 1997."

How about writing off some taxes for the poor people? One set of rules for the well to do and another set of rules for the poor? All one has to do is check the Erie County, Ohio Auditor's online records to see what a joke that they are.


@centauri....I could NOT agree with you more. That was absolutely the wrong message to send. Writing off that much money simply because of a particular "position" that someone holds in any city or the "appearance" that someone may give in any city is wrong no matter what. Then to turn around and ask the poor to pick up the slack adds insult to injury. I about threw up when I read that article. Good for the Sandusky Register for writing and printing THAT story. It just proves the injustice that goes on here. Really sucks and boarders on the absurd. Its not who you know but who you ARE that counts apparently, which is totally unfair.


"Erie County commissioners Bill Monaghan and Pat Shenigo got a huge assist last year from Jim Rokakis, the former Cuyahoga County treasurer"


Don't trust Cuyahoga County Ohio officials.
"Cuyahoga County Treasurer Jim Rokakis ignores new hiring guidelines with board of revision appointments"


Aren't all liens and back taxes forgiven once a Land Bank property is handed over to the City/County and then sold to another property owner?

Keep up the good work. Before you know it all Land Bank back taxes will disappear with no infrastructure or schools improvements to show for it.


If your county is taking advice from Cuyahoga County, you better think twice: