CHAPPAQUA, N.Y. – Dozens of properties with outstanding tax liens totaling $2.6 million are in danger of foreclosure and have been targeted by the New Castle Town Board for collection.
“Every year we file delinquent taxes,” said Dan Posen, a consulting attorney for the town. “We’ve done so for the last 12 years, but haven’t been requesting to go a step further, which is to enforce the tax liens and collect.”
Posen said 69 parcels have been identified by Patricia Antonucci, the town’s deputy receiver of taxes, as being past due. Only 14 of the properties are owner-occupied.
“A lot of the parcels tend to be little slivers of land that people don’t even know they own,” Posen said.
Town Board member Jason Chapin runs a foreclosure prevention program in Connecticut and said the town should try to help the property owners before sending notices of foreclosure. Chapin recommended putting the owners in touch with organizations like Westchester Residential Opportunities in White Plains.
“The whole purpose is to keep them in their home and to get them back on track,” Chapin said. “So I’m very glad to hear that most the 69 properties that we’re talking about are vacant properties, so there wouldn’t be anybody that would be displaced. There’s a process to help them, and we’re not talking about taking anybody’s home.”
Chapin and the board agreed that the next course of action is to send notices to property owners that the town intends to collect on the overdue taxes. Chapin said sending notices will at least motivate the property owners to do something.
“I think the faster we move along, the faster we’ll be able to help these people,” Chapin said. “Because what happens a lot of times is, they’re in a state of denial and shock, and aren’t ready to do anything because they don’t think they have any options. And so this will hopefully help them move forward.”