Kiosk, Online Payment Option Now Available for County Property Taxes | News, Sports, Jobs


Morning Journal/ Mary Ann Greier Columbiana County Treasurer Bryan Blakeman demonstrates how to use the self-service payment kiosk to pay property taxes on the first floor of the Lisbon County Courthouse.

LISBON — Paying property taxes in Columbiana County just got a little easier, with a self-service payment kiosk now available at the courthouse or a live online payment option on the Treasurer’s website.

“I think every time you make things easier and more convenient for the public, you’re doing a service to the community,” said County Treasurer Bryan Blakeman.

Easing the payment process and modernizing the office were the two goals when Blakeman ran for office.

At a Treasurers’ Conference last November, he said he saw the standalone kiosk functionality offered by F&E Payment Pros and thought it would be a good way to cut queues during tax time to a fraction of the cost.

At the same time, it decided to launch the online payment capability as well. People can go to Treasurer.columbiana.oh.gov, which is a secure site, to pay their property taxes online. By creating an account, they can also be notified when their bill is due.

County commissioners approved American Rescue Plan Act funds to pay for the kiosk and software earlier this year at a one-time cost of $8,850. Annual maintenance costs will total $4,045, including $795 for hardware and $3,250 for software, and will come from the treasurer’s budget.

Supply chain issues delayed delivery and scheduling of the unit. At this time, Blakeman noted that only people with overdue accounts or who are on the payment plan will be able to use the machine since the new tax bills will not be due until February 17, 2023 for the first half and July 28. , 2023 for the second half. The payment plan program allows monthly property tax payments.

Now, instead of queuing at the office, taxpayers will be able to go to the kiosk when the courthouse is open, make a payment by cash, check or credit/debit card and receive a printed receipt. The kiosk has a counterfeit checker for banknotes fed into the machine. Checks can also be inserted to be read and then withdrawn or credit or debit cards can be used, but a convenience fee of 2.5% for credit cards and $1.50 for electronic checks is added . No money orders will be accepted at the booth.

Blakeman said a big part of the reason people come to pay their property tax in person is to get that proof they paid and the kiosk provides it along with the printed receipt. Taxpayers can type in their name or even just hold their bill with parcel number in front of the reader and their bill can be viewed. Several parcels can also be paid for at the same time.

“It’s a lot cheaper than hiring extra help,” he said.

During tax time, he plans to spend time at the booth helping taxpayers use the machine for the first time. It’s no different than using an ATM at the bank, but people will still be able to walk into the office if they want. He noted that the machine uses the same encryption system as banks and the money will never be left there overnight.

New tax information for next year’s invoices will be uploaded in January.

Blakeman said he also wanted to invite any other municipalities interested in having a booth at their locations to contact him. East Liverpool and Columbiana have already expressed interest. He said it’s possible that if the kiosks are installed, county property taxpayers could pay their bills at the other locations, as well as other bills for the communities in question. He said the cost could be shared between the municipality and the county.

The idea for the other locations came from Columbiana City Manager Lance Willard. Nothing has happened yet regarding other places, but Blakeman envisions people being able to pay their property taxes with city utilities, such as water and sewer bills, or in some cases, electricity or garbage bills.




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