IINCLINE VILLAGE, Nev. — Washoe County has nearly refunded more than $43 million in illegally collected taxes to Incline Village property owners.
A status report on the Washoe County website says 100 percent of 8,763 Incline parcels have been adjusted, and 7,451 refunds have been processed. The dollar amount is slightly more than $44.4 million — more than $7 million of which is interest.
The county had been issuing refunds since early 2012, in response to various rulings stemming from the historic July 7, 2011, court order from the Nevada Supreme Court ordering the treasurer to refund Incline property owners for unconstitutional taxes they paid for the 2006-07 fiscal year.
The rulings found that Incline residents were paying higher property taxes than residents in Douglas County with Tahoe properties, a violation of Nevada law, which requires properties to be valued with similar standards.
A handful of checks for interest still need to be paid, Washoe County Treasurer Tammi Davis said Monday. She expects the refunds to be 100 percent complete this month.
After county staff evaluated Incline’s properties, some parcels either didn’t get a refund or were exempt, hence the difference between number of parcels and number of refunds, Davis said.
Further, Davis said several checks have been returned to the county.
“As you can imagine, seven years, we are getting some of those checks back,” Davis said. “We’re doing our best to find better addresses, but if we’re unable to or someone doesn’t cash their check, then it follows a process of unclaimed property.”
From there, the unclaimed money goes to the state’s treasurer’s office, said Davis, adding that it will take several months before the county can determine how much of the refund goes unclaimed.
As of April, Davis said her department had spent 27,000 employee hours working on the refund project, which required the county to hire seven employees to manage the process, according to the Reno Gazette-Journal.
Davis said she will present a full report on employee hours and other details to the Washoe County Commission in July.