Corinth residents due county tax refund

By Lena Mitchell/NEMS Daily Journal Corinth Bureau

CORINTH – More than $69,000 collected through an unauthorized tax could be refunded directly to Corinth taxpayers, the Board of Supervisors was told Monday.
Tax Collector Greg Younger told the board that through his mistake, $69,600 was improperly collected through real property, personal and utility taxes and auto tags for Corinth residents.
It was generated through a 1-mill tax collected during the 2009-10 fiscal year to support the Alcorn County rubbish site.
According to Younger, the board’s purchasing clerk asked the collector’s office in August or September of 2009 whether the tax could be collected to support the Farmington Road collection site.
Younger explained at the time that creating a separate line for the collection would be a simple bookkeeping procedure and began collecting the tax from Corinth residents without ever receiving a board order to do so.
When the matter was brought up later in 2009, Younger admitted he did not bring the error to the board’s attention but discontinued collecting the tax.
To correct the problem, Younger now favors reducing the general fund tax rate for Corinth residents by 1 mill for the 2011-12 tax year, and reimbursing the general fund from the money collected in the rubbish account.
However, the county’s auditor prefers to issue a direct refund to those who paid the tax. Younger said this type of refund could prove more costly to the county since some of the amounts are as small as 9 cents, though the average amount is about $12.
Younger is retiring as tax collector after serving four terms to run for chancery clerk in this year’s election.
County attorney Robert Krohn will ask the attorney general for a written opinion on how the refund should be handled before making a final decision.
Contact Lena Mitchell at (662) 287-9822 or lena.mitchell@journalinc.com.