Property taxes are not the most pleasant subject, even a tax collector recognizes, and so Sandra M. Davis, Los Angeles County treasurer and tax collector, has developed some public services to alleviate stress.
"This year, we are offering extended office and telephone assistance hours, along with our 24-hour Proptax telephone service," she announced.
Starting last Monday, daily downtown operations in the Hall of Administration at 225 N. Hill St., extend from 7 a.m. to 7 p.m., Monday through Friday. There also will be special Saturday hours Dec. 2 and Dec. 9 from 9 a.m. to 1 p.m.
Telephone operator assistance, at (213) 974-2111, is being offered from 8 a.m. to 9 p.m., Monday through Friday. "I would urge you to call at off-peak hours for faster service," Davis said. The 24-hour Proptax service, which has recorded information, is available at the same telephone number.
First installments of property taxes were due Nov. 1, but the taxes won't become delinquent until 5 p.m., Monday, Dec. 11. First and second installments may be paid at the same time.
"Since most of you will be paying by mail, be sure that your envelope is postmarked before the delinquent date," Davis urged, "and for your own safety, please pay by check or money order."
For faster service when phoning or writing to her office, be ready to provide the assessor's identification number (with map book, page and parcel numbers), she suggested.
"In the event that you did not receive a property tax bill by Nov. 10, please call, and we will gladly mail you a duplicate," she added. "You may also visit the Treasurer and Tax Collector office. . . . My department welcomes any suggestions from property owners as to ways we can better serve the taxpayer."
Her department is "determined," she said, "to make the property tax payment process as user-friendly as possible."