Treasurer and Taxpayer Advocate Royce T. Flora

The duty of the Maricopa County Treasurer is to collect property taxes levied by the numerous districts and jurisdictions that provide services in your area. I believe my duty extends beyond a collection agency. Too often the balance between taxation to fund “necessary” public services can outweigh the sacred right of all citizens of the United States to truly own their property. No one should be taxed out of their home. The purpose of this page is to provide taxpayers with important information on innovations and legislation with the goal of protecting fellow homeowners. This resource will be updated periodically for informational purposes as well as a call to action for citizens to hold their elected leaders accountable for upcoming legislation intended to protect the rights of homeowners.

Recent legislation I introduced and helped pass has empowered homeowners with tax liens to keep their homes. These are significant changes and have already had a tremendous positive impact on struggling taxpayers.

Pay Only the Oldest Lien to Avoid Foreclosure

I sponsored legislation in 2015 that eliminated the combining of each newly incurred tax lien into one lump sum amount. Homeowners who faced the prospect of foreclosure were required to pay this cumulative amount owed on all prior liens to halt foreclosure proceedings. Starting with the 2014 Tax Year, parcels with no prior year liens are no longer required to be paid cumulatively to stop the foreclosure process. Homeowners that are eligible under this new law now have the right to pay only the oldest individual lien and accrued interest to prevent foreclosure (See Figure 1).

Graphic of Comparison of Lien Redemption Prior to Legislation versus Today
Figure 1 - Comparison of Lien Redemption Prior to Legislation Vs. Today
*Detailed explanation of eligibility:
If the parcel/tax year is a 2013 or prior tax lien, then it is not eligible for a potential separate lien redemption.
If the parcel/tax year is a 2014 or later tax lien, but has outstanding tax liens of 2013 or older, then it is not eligible for separate lien redemption. It is treated the same way as mentioned above.
If the parcel/tax year is a 2014 or later tax lien and there are no other older outstanding tax lien years for the same parcel, then the parcel/year is eligible for separate lien redemption.

Outstanding Tax Lien Interest Rates Dropped An Average of 85%

Until recently all tax liens carried a statutory interest rate of 16%. In 2015 legislation was passed that changed the interest rate owed on tax liens from 16% to the bid rate paid by the investor at auction. Based on the 2016 tax lien sale, the average bid rate was 2.4%. This represents an 85% decrease on the average interest amount owed by property owners with outstanding tax liens. The graph below shows the 16% statutory interest rate that used to be paid by property owners with outstanding liens. The lien rate has now dropped to the bid rate which is determined by the fair market (See Figure 2).

Graphic of Delinquent Interest Rate Versus Average Bid Rate
Figure 2 - Delinquent Interest Rate Vs. Avg. Bid Rate


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CP Expirations Legal Changes

There has been a change in CP Liens that is applicable to lienholders. Beginning September, 2019, SB1236 will include a provision that modifies the language in §A.R.S. 42-18127 Section A.

The original certificate of purchase, in addition to all subsequent taxes (sub taxes) will expire if an action to foreclose has not commenced within ten years after the last day of the month in which the original certificate was acquired.

Pursuant to this legislation, tax liens eligible for expiration will include the original certificate and all related sub taxes in the expiration process. Those liens with deadlines that are already in effect will not be affected however it will affect all future sub taxing liens so that the deadline will expire within a ten year period after the last day of the month that it was acquired and time limits cannot be extended to the original purchase.

You should consult your attorney for further advice.

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Elderly Assistance Program

We have been receiving many phone calls from seniors expressing shock and dismay at the significant increase in their property tax bills. It is tragic. Treasurer Royce T. Flora has been trying for five years to get the legislature to reclassify low-income seniors’ homes in order to lower their ever-increasing property taxes. Several different players have defeated these efforts each year, which has led to a doubling of many folks’ property taxes this year. Treasurer Flora is not giving up. Please click on this LINK to read a letter to legislators explaining the Treasurer’s disappointment in their failure to help our needy seniors. With the enthusiastic help of Representatives Bob Thorpe (R-Flagstaff) and Anthony Kern (R-Phoenix), Treasurer Flora will again champion the effort to get a bill passed by legislators and signed by the governor in 2020.

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October 24, 2019



The political attack made by Vince Leach, from Pinal County, on the Maricopa County Treasurer’s Office is neither factual nor warranted. The Maricopa County Treasurer has complied with the new law to mail out 2019 Property Tax notices to property owners with a mortgage. As required by SB1033, “ARS § 42-18054: (a) tax statement sent to the mortgagor shall be a written document and may be in any form established by the county treasurer.” This was done.

In an effort to mitigate the costs of this unfunded mandate, Treasurer Royce Flora designed a postcard-size notice like the ones discontinued four years ago because it duplicated information already provided to the taxpayer from both the Assessor and the mortgage companies. Mr. Leach’s unfunded mandate in the SB1033 law cost Maricopa County taxpayers an additional $230,000.00 for printing and mailing, alone. That is not “childish” money.

Mr. Leach’s complaints appear to be a form of retaliation against Treasurer Flora and this office. Mr. Leach did not support Treasurer Flora’s efforts to protect low-income seniors from ever increasing property taxes, and helped lead the effort to kill the bill putting seniors at risk of losing their homes. Mr. Leach was told about the cost before the bill passed and his statement to the Treasurer’s PIO was “have fun.” Maybe that is why people in his county have higher taxes than we do in Maricopa County.

The Maricopa County Treasurer’s Office is the most transparent government entity in the state of Arizona. All our statements, processes, and taxpayer information is on our website, in addition to the several mailings and email blasts throughout the year. Our website is easily accessed and user-friendly. In fact, over 300,000 property owners have accessed our website for their specific property tax information, in addition to general information that it provides.

Treasurer Flora will continue to look for ways to lower costs to taxpayers and, in particular, will work with like-minded elected officials to relieve the tax burden on low income seniors. Mr. Leach clearly is not one of them.

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Parcel number 123-45-678 9, can be entered as 123 45 678

Parcel number 123-45-678a 9, can be entered as 123 45 678 a

For Mobile Home/Business Personal Property - Use the personal property roll number with a prefix of 9 as the parcel number.
Example: Roll number 60-00-001 8 can be entered as 960 00 001.

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