The Department of Revenue is giving Floridians more than two extra weeks to pay their property taxes as the state deals with the effects of the COVID-19 virus.
According to an order from Executive Director Jim Zingale, “The date for citizens and businesses to pay property taxes in all Florida Counties is extended from March 31 to April 15, 2020.”
Those payments submitted electronically or postmarked by that April 15 date will be considered timely payments.
The order also applies to “property tax returns filed by a railroad, railroad terminal, private car and freight line and equipment company property.” The deadline for those entities was originally April 1 but is also being moved to April 15.
That April 15 date coincides with the period K-12 schools will be closed in the state.
It’s unclear if that forecloses the possibility the property tax deadline would be extended further.
DeSantis had previously allowed Zingale’s office flexibility in extending those deadlines.
Many Floridians are facing economic uncertainty as social distancing measures remain in effect to stem the spread of the virus. A Thursday release on unemployment claims saw a historic spike in Florida’s numbers — and those of the entire nation.
Rep. Chip LaMarca release a statement Thursday afternoon thanking the state for acting on this issue. Lamarca represents House District 93 in Broward County, one of the hardest hit counties in the state.
“I have been in constant communication with the Governor’s Office on this topic for the last week and they have been working tirelessly with the Department of Revenue to create a solution for working families. By working together every day on solutions for Florida families the Governor has again shown great leadership and a willingness to listen,” LaMarca said.
“By giving families some relief so they do not have to decide between paying their property taxes and putting food on the table while benefits are being processed during this difficult time. My promise to the residents of Florida, Broward County, and House District 93 is that I will continue to work on their behalf. Now is not the time to play partisan politics, or use a crisis to score political points and headlines. Now is the time to act like public servants and work together for the people we all serve.”
The move doesn’t go as far as some have wanted. Rep. Shevrin Jones recently publicly called on the state to move the property tax deadline to the end of June.