Town of Babylon Receiver of Taxes Jennifer Montiglio announced the opening of a drive-through tax payment system as a response to the ongoing spread of COVID-19 on Long Island. The Town leased three booths and outfitted them with the necessary technology so residents can pay their property taxes without leaving their vehicle. Employees in the booths will be provided with masks and gloves while dealing with the public. All residents are also required to wear the necessary personal protective equipment (PPE).
“When I took office last January, I certainly didn’t expect to have to deal with a situation like this during my first full tax collection season” said Tax Receiver Jennifer Montiglio. “I would like to thank my staff, our Departments of Public Works, Public Safety and Information Technologies, and Supervisor Rich Schaffer and the rest of the Town Board for making this solution a reality,” she added.
The three booths are set up in the westernmost parking lot of Town Hall. Residents are asked to enter the lot from N. Indiana Avenue, where they will be met by Town Public Safety Officers who will screen them for the correct documents and necessary PPE. Once they have been helped, residents will exit the lot via the main entrance/exit on Sunrise Highway. A fourth line will be formed along the curb for those paying cash. These residents will be escorted into the building by Public Safety Officers to complete their transaction.
From May 8 through May 17, residents can pay their taxes Monday through Friday, from 9:00am to 4:30pm. Hours will be extended beginning May 17 from 8:00am to 6:00pm Monday through Friday, and 8:00am through 12:00pm Saturday.
“Jennifer has done an amazing job with the cards she has been dealt,” said Supervisor Rich Schaffer. “This is a great solution for the difficult timing the situation has presented us, and may even help many senior citizens who can now get their taxes paid from the comfort of their car,” he added.
Supervisor Schaffer, Deputy Supervisor Tony Martinez and the rest of the Town Board sent a letter to Suffolk County Executive Steve Bellone formally requesting a suspension of penalties for residents who pay before August 1, 2020 that can prove financial hardship as a result of the COVID-19 outbreak. County Executive Bellone has not responded to that request.
“We are hopeful our County Executive will be able to provide our struggling residents with some relief on their property tax payments at this point. All ten town Supervisors were happy to help him lobby for the amendment to the Municipality Liquidity Facility (MLF) through the federal CARES Act, which he said would provide that much needed relief for taxpayers,” said Supervisor Schaffer. “We’re about three weeks out from the deadline and still haven’t heard anything. We took him at his word that the MLF amendment would provide that relief. I hope he understands that we are under a moral obligation to help those who have been negatively impacted by this terrible pandemic,” he added.
Town of Babylon residents are still strongly encouraged to pay their tax bill online via the Town website, through the mail or by phone. For more information, please visit the Tax Receiver’s page.