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Ohio House Passes Legislation Regarding Property Tax Liens

December 14, 2023
Riordan T. McClain News

COLUMBUS – The Ohio House of Representatives voted in favor of House Bill 93, changing the limitations on recovery and lien imposition by municipalities against property owners of non-owner-occupied properties for unpaid water, sewer, and disposal services rates and charges. The measure is joint sponsored by State Reps. Mark Johnson (R-Chillicothe) and Riordan McClain (R-Upper Sandusky).

“When local municipal water or waste corporations certify property tax liens against non-owner-occupied residences for unpaid charges, liens are brought against the owner of the property rather than the resident,” said Johnson. “This unfair, abusive practice needs to end.”

“To me, this is a common-sense personal responsibility measure. If a renter signs up for utilities and uses them, they should be responsible for payment of such,” Johnson continued. “Municipalities will finally have more incentive to shut off these services instead of relying on the property owner to prop up the less than responsible renter.”

The legislation will ensure the property owner is not charged more than the “termination ,amount,” or the amount that when unpaid, would result in the municipal services provider terminating that service. If the complaint is not resolved to the individual’s satisfaction, they may appeal the matter to the local municipal court.

“Under current law, the practice of charging the property owner for the delinquent payments of the tenant is allowed,” said McClain. “House Bill 93 seeks to correct this longstanding practice by removing the option to place a property tax lien due to services not contracted by the owner.”

House Bill 93 awaits consideration by the Ohio Senate.