Treasurer gets approval to conduct title searches

Humboldt County Treasurer Rhona Lecumberry asked the County Commission to approve her request to proceed with title searches related to properties which are to be sold in the 2020 delinquent tax auction. The commission gave its approval at its July 22 meeting.

“We currently have 54 delinquent parcels that would be eligible for sale and a total outstanding balance of $47,465.20,” Lecumberry said.

“Twenty-six of these parcels are located in Golconda, 20 of which are held over from previous auctions.”

Lecumberry told the commission the office is looking for ways to increase the sale of properties that have remained on the auction list year after year. She said that many of these parcels are reaching the point at which the delinquent taxes and related fees are making it difficult to sell. “I'm still talking with other treasurers, some treasurers their commission has voted to take those on as county properties,” she said. “I don't know if that's really the right thing to do here because then they come off the tax roll.” She said the treasurer’s office will try to sell them again but didn’t know if the office would hold an online auction or not. 

She said there was nothing in Nevada statutes to dispense with the unsold property. The treasurer also said that Humboldt County was not the only county in the state to face the issue of unsold property and suggested that county treasurers as a whole may need to approach state legislature to address the issue. 

One option she said the office will look at is to combine several parcels in to one to create larger parcels which could then be built on. According to the documents admitted for the commission’s review, parcel sizes range from as small as 0.07 acres to as many as 41.45 acres and range in taxes owed from as low as $112 to as high as $1,875. 

One property of interest which Lecumberry point out to the commission is the site of the former Great Basin Bank of Nevada. The Great Basin Bank of Nevada was closed by the State of Nevada Division of Financial Institutions in 2009. The bank closed as a result of the “Great Recession” of 2008 and its deposits were absorbed by Nevada State Bank.

Lecumberry said the bank had been removed from the list because the treasurer’s office has conflicting addresses to send delinquent tax notices and notification of sale to recover back taxes. “We thought it best to go ahead and pull that and make sure all of our notifications are in order because that's a pretty important parcel,” she said.

The treasurer said many people purchase the parcels through online real estate brokers then decide not to pay taxes. The property reverts to the treasurer’s office for delinquent taxes.

When the parcels do go to auction, Lecumberry said the minimum bid will include any delinquent taxes, fees, interest and penalties.  According to the county website, all properties are sold “as is” and other fees associated with the property may include liens “related to delinquent sewer, special improvement district assessments, nuisance abatements and other related charges.”

The treasurer’s office publishes Public Notices of all auctions and a roll of those property owners who are in arrears. For more information about current taxes and fees owed, contact the treasurer’s office at 775-623-6444.