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Motor Vehicle Excise Bills
                                                                    
Motor Vehicle Excise bills are assessed on a calendar year, not a fiscal year.  There are no statutory dates on which excise bills must be due.  Excise bills are sent to taxpayers by the Town of Princeton throughout the year as groups of bills known as Commitments.  Commitments are received by the Town from the Massachusetts Registry of Motor Vehicles. Approximately three-fourths of all excise bills will be mailed in the First Commitment as a single group, usually in February, and will be due, by statute, in 30 days. The balance of the bills will be sent in groups throughout the rest of the calendar year as additional commitments of bills as received by the Town from the Registry.

The Town of Princeton has no control over which bills will be included in any particular commitment. Each vehicle is taxed from the first day of the month in which it is registered for the balance of the calendar year. The excise is based on information furnished on the application for registration. While individual communities bill and collect these excise taxes, it is the Registry of Motor Vehicles which is responsible for determining which community the vehicle owner will be billed. The “Place of Garaging” determines the billing community that the owner has listed on the automobile insurance form. There are between six and eight Motor Vehicle Excise tax bill mailings during the year. The largest mailing occurs in February and usually includes all vehicles that were registered in Princeton for over one year.

The statutory excise rate is $25 per thousand dollars of value. The value of a vehicle for the purpose of the excise is the applicable percentage for that year of the manufacturer’s suggested retail price for that vehicle. The applicable percentages are set out in state law as follows:


In the year preceding the year of manufacture
50%
In the year of manufacture
90%
In the second year
60%
In the third year
40%
In the fourth year
25%
In the fifth and succeeding years
10%

Original Bill– Payment is due within 30 days from the date of issue. A person who does not receive a bill is still liable for the excise tax. Therefore, it is important to keep the Registry of Motor Vehicles and the Post Office informed of current name and addresses so the excise tax bill can be delivered promptly.

Demand bills will be sent on all excise bills not paid within the thirty-day period. The Demand bill will add a $15.00 charge to each bill, plus interest at the rate of 12% per annum from the due date to the date of payment.

If the Motor Vehicle Excise bill is not paid within 14 days of the issuance of the Demand bill, this office sends the unpaid bill to the Town’s Deputy Collector for further action. The Deputy Collector for the Town of Princeton is Cheryl Noel, P.O. Box 203, Hardwick, MA. 01037, phone 413-477-6986.

Notice of Warrant- The Deputy Collector will first mail a Notice of Warrant to the delinquent taxpayer. This notice will add an additional $22.00 to each bill, and the interest continues to accrue at 12% per annum.

Service of Warrant- If not paid within 30 days of the Notice of Warrant, the Deputy Collector will then issue a Service of Warrant, adding yet another $17.00 charge to the bill. Services of Warrant are hand delivered to the last known address of the vehicle owners. Again, interest continues to accrue at 12% per annum.

Non-Renewal Marks– If the excise continues unpaid after Service of Warrant, the owner and his vehicle will be “marked” at the Registry of Motor Vehicles for non-renewal of both car registration and driving license. At this point, the Registry adds an additional $20.00 to each marked bill, which the Town is obliged to collect. ~Individuals whose bills are marked may not renew their license or register any car until the delinquent bill has been paid.

Incorrect Excise Bills- When a taxpayer receives an excise bill that he believes to be incorrect, he must contact the Assessors’ Office for information on whether the bill may be eligible for abatement. If the Assessors determine that the bill can be abated in full, any interest and charges that may have accrued to the bill will also be abated. If, however, there is only a partial abatement, the balance of the excise must be paid along with all accrued interest and charges.

Partial Payments– Partial payments of motor vehicle excise bills may not be accepted. Since the law states that interest and charges, as they accrue, become a part of the bill, payment of delinquent bills may be accepted only if all fees and charges are included in the payment.

On-Line Payments– Motor Vehicle Excise Bills may be paid on-line through the Town of Princeton web site until the end of the demand due period. For more information on making on-line payments, please see the “Pay Bills On-Line” section on the Collector’s home page.


 

Town of Princeton, 6 Town Hall Drive, Princeton, MA 01541