Lockport Union-Sun & Journal Online

Local News

July 16, 2014

Town looks at electronic way to view tax bills

Lockport Union-Sun & Journal — Town of Lockport residents will soon have more options to pay and view bills online.

At Wednesday's town board work session meeting, Lori Carrero, the town's receiver of taxes, announced Lockport is seeking bids for tax collection software and services vendor to allow town tax bills to be viewed and paid online. 

Carrero said viewing and paying bills online is an option for most of Erie County, but very few municipalities in Niagara County offer it.

Carrero received a bid from TSL Company of Buffalo, who is used by most municipalities in Erie County. TSL would charge the town $4,900 for the software and installation services, then the town would pay $500 a year for maintenance. 

The software program would allow residents to view and print their current tax bill online at any time. This can also be used by attorneys that need tax bill information for real estate closings. 

Carrero will also be able to update the files immediately with what has been paid and what hasn't.

Supervisor Marc R. Smith said the town receives hundreds of requests each year from residents asking their bills to be printed, emailed or mailed to them, causing the clerk's office to stop working to access the information requested.

"We're spending the money for postage and time," he said. "It would be so much more convenient for the people that need this to be able to go on and do it themselves."

Carrero said they often receive calls from residents during the last week of tax collection where they say they didn't get their bill.

“People work," she said. "People want to be able to go at two in the morning and find their tax bill.”

Before the town can approve the contract with TSL, one more proposal is needed from a second company. Smith said he expects the town tax bill to be viewable online by fall. At that time, he would also like a town cell phone app to be available, allowing residents to find the answers to their questions quickly and easily on their phones without having to call the clerk's office.

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