County Prepares for Judicial Tax Sale

CLEARFIELD – Clearfield County has started preparations to conduct a judicial tax sale in March, according to Commissioner John A. Sobel, chairperson.

The commissioners, Sobel said, have been “pressed for many months” from various segments of the community that want the county to start having regular judicial tax sales. He said the commissioners, the county’s Tax Assessment Office and associated offices have been preparing to have a judicial tax sale this year and annually after that.

According to him, the commissioners have met with Clearfield County Sheriff Wes Thurston to make sure its meeting the service requirements. However, he wanted to compliment Controller Tony Scotto and his staff for its recent assistance with the process.

The county, Sobel said, received information within the past 24 hours about the amounts of monies due to sheriff’s departments of other counties throughout Pennsylvania. He said as part of the process, one must deputize the sheriff’s departments of other counties where the owners of properties are living.

Additionally, he said the Controller’s Office processed dozens of checks for the county over the past 24 hours. These checks, he said, totaled a proposed amount of more than $12,000 in advanced service costs. He explained that the county must advance these service costs to other sheriff’s departments, so that there’s proper service when the county holds its sale in the coming months.

“We know it’s been something that a lot of members of the public have been concerned about,” said Sobel. “We have been working diligently on this.” He thanked the Controller’s Office for its assistance despite currently having a short staff.

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One thought on “County Prepares for Judicial Tax Sale

  1. tommylee

    It appears that Commissioner Sobel may have changed his attitude toward Judicial Sales lately. The following is quoted from Feb. 09, 2010 County Commissioners meeting on the subject of Judicial Sales where Sobel opposed allowing procedures to be put into place that were needed for a Judicial Sale.
    Barbara Johnston attended the meeting to inquire as to why there have not been any judicial sales in the County. Ms. Johnston explained that she made her initial request in 2007. Ms. Johnston feels that there are 601 properties in the County that should be brought for Judicial Sale. Previously the Commissioners contracted with two local individuals to perform title abstracting services, one of the individuals has decided not to do the work and the other will not do it unless she is covered under the County’s Errors and Emissions Insurance. Ms. Johnston is sending a notice to all of the municipalities that they have a right to petition that the properties in their district be brought up for Judicial Sale. Jennifer Wooster agreed that a Judicial Sale is needed but explained that she is still working towards having a Judicial Sale
    along with all of the other duties that she is expected to perform and believes she is doing the best job that she is capable of doing. Commissioner McCracken explained that when properties are returned for nonpayment of taxes they are offered up at the upset tax sale then they are held for the Judicial Sale process if they do not sell but feels we do need to get someone onboard to do the abstracting work. Ms. Wooster offered that she is in negotiations with another individual to take on the abstracting services for
    the Judicial Sales. Solicitor Kesner commented that this is not a legal situation and it is not appropriate to cross exam the Chief Assessor about this issue, she has been doing extraordinary work under exceptional circumstances. This is not a new issue the previous Chief Assessor asked for additional resources to get
    the job completed. Commissioner McCracken made a motion to advertise for abstracting service proposals to begin the process for the Judicial Sales, seconded by Commissioner McMillen;
    Commissioner Sobel opposed; motion carried.
    Very nice to see that FINALLY the Commissioners are in support of Judicial Sales in Clearfield county. The proof will be in the pudding to see just how many properties are actually offered for sale at this upcoming Judicial Sale.

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