Mayor Tom Barrett: Paying property taxes now could save money

Mayor Tom Barrett: Paying property taxes now could save money

Hundreds waited in lines at City Hall Wednesday to pay taxes.

Mayor Tom Barrett says the recent Republican tax overhaul significantly changes the system.

"There are rather dramatic changes in the tax law that are going to effect taxpayers here in the state of Wisconsin," Barrett said.

One change is limiting local property tax and state income tax deductions to a combined $10,000. Local CPA Arthur Lee says that could lose money for individual homeowners and families with higher than average home values.

"So if your state income tax withheld, plus your property taxes are more than $10,000 dollars, well, you're going to lose some of those deductions," Lee said.

But if you pay those taxes in the 2017 calendar year, you can deduct them in April before those deductions are capped.

"The IRS code is a cash in, cash out business, so you pay the cash in, then you can take the deduction," Lee said.

But you have to do it before January 1, and the holiday weekend makes it much harder to accomplish after Friday.

Barrett says he's been getting calls about people trying to prepay their 2018 taxes to use the current deductions. That is allowed in some states, but not in Wisconsin.

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