Paying your vehicle property taxes late will be a thing of the past after the middle of this year unless you want to drive with expired license tags.
The N.C. Division of Motor Vehicles is rolling out a new program in which vehicle taxes will have to be paid at the same time as registration fees.
The Tax and Tag Together program was approved by the General Assembly in 2005, but has taken state and county officials eight years to coordinate tax collection processes.
Currently, vehicle owners receive their registration bills from the DMV several weeks before tags expire. Then the property tax bill arrives from the county a few months later.
That allows vehicle owners to delay paying taxes, although they incur a penalty when the bills become overdue.
The new program will begin in May, for registration fees due in July.
DMV officials say they hope a web page will help vehicle owners become more familiar with the program.
The division is working with all 100 county revenue offices to make this new web page available, said Eric Boyette, the DMVs commissioner.
The DMV says the notice mailed to vehicle owners will list the tax bill and registration fee separately, but they will be paid together. Tax money collected by the DMV then will be forwarded to the respective counties.
The Tax and Tag Together program will not affect the law requiring vehicles to pass a safety and emissions test each year. New registration stickers will not be issued until the vehicles pass those inspections.
Youll still have the option of paying the combined tax-registration bill online, or at a DMV office.
The Web page explaining the new program can be found at www.ncdot.gov/dmv. Click on the Tax and Tag Together icon on the right side of the website.