Department Operating Efficiencies
The Office of the City Treasurer is recognized as one of the most efficiently run departments in City government.
In 1976, there were 40 authorized full time positions and 57 seasonal or temporary positions for a total of 53.58 Full Time Equivalents (FTE's). Today, there are 24 authorized full time, 3 part time, and 30 temporary positions for a total of 27.44 FTE's. This represents a reduction of 41.24% in position authority and a 48.79% reduction in FTE's.
In 1976, taxpayers needed to come down to City Hall to pick up and pay their property tax bills. Today, all property tax bills are mailed out to taxpayers. Additionally, taxpayers can now pay their property tax bills at any one of 13 branches of US Bank within the City of Milwaukee. Escrow agents can access and download property tax bill information and remit payments electronically. During the current tax collection period in December and January, taxpayers can pay their taxes in full via the Internet using an e-check, credit card, or debit card payment application. Taxpayers can also enroll in an automated Electronic Funds Transfer Program to pay their taxes on the ten month, interest free installment program.
By implementing the use of a bank lock box for property tax payments, the department has improved cash flow, increased investable fund balances, and realized greater investment revenue. By implementing zero balance concentration accounts for the disbursement of City payments, the department has reduced float, increased investable fund balances, and realized greater investment revenue.
The department employs state of the art computer software to collect and account for monies due the City and manage the City's investment portfolio.
The department attempts to collect all delinquent property tax accounts by every means available prior to pursuing a foreclosure action The department has been extremely successful in the collection of property taxes and has achieved an average collection rate of over 99% of the City's total property tax levy by the end of the tax enforcement cycle. This is one of the best property tax collection rates in the country.