Morrison County announces property tax relief in response to the COVID-19 pandemic

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Contributed / Metro Newspaper Service

The Morrison County Board of Commissioners approved a resolution requesting the auditor/treasurer abate the majority of penalty on late payment of property taxes payable in May 2020.

The due date for first half property taxes remains set May 15. The county board does not have the authority to change the due date, but does have the authority to address the penalty if taxes are paid late.

On an unanimous 5-0 vote, the county board acted to abate the majority of penalties associated with late payment of property taxes through July of 2020. This effort was undertaken after consultation with taxing authorities throughout the county. The county board recognized that as a result of unemployment, lost or reduced wages and the loss of business income, prompt payment of property taxes may be a major economic pressure for many county residents and businesses come this May.

“Those that can pay real estate taxes should do so on time, local taxing jurisdictions count on those dollars to operate and provide public services. However, imposing the full penalty for late payment of property taxes this May would simply be unjust and unreasonable at this time,” noted Board Chair Mike LeMieur, in a news release. “While a uniform statewide plan to change the due date to help our property taxpayers would have been ideal, we simply couldn’t wait any longer. If the State Legislators decide to do something, we will re-evaluate and adjust our local program accordingly,” added LeMieur.

This action is an attempt to balance helping those residents and businesses seeking property tax payment relief with the critical cash flow needs of local schools, cities and taxing districts dependent upon property tax revenues.


Minnesota statute allows for a county board, with the concurrence of the county treasurer, to abate penalties for late payment of property taxes. The county acted to reduce penalties for late payment on all applicable property classifications as follows:

  • For taxes paid between May 16 and June 30: a penalty of 1% of the unpaid tax otherwise due.

  • For taxes paid between July 1 and July 31: a penalty of 2% of the unpaid tax otherwise due.

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