Mayor Tom Bernard announced today that in accordance with provisions of legislation passed by the Legislature and signed by the Governor the City of North Adams will extend due dates on real estate and personal property bills, motor vehicle excise bills, water and sewer bills, and exemption and deferral applications until June 1, 2020. These extensions apply regardless of the due date printed on the bills.

In addition, the Mayor announced that the City will waive the payment of interest and other penalties on late payments that were due after March 10, 2020 and paid before June 30, 2020, for any excise, tax, betterment assessment, water or sewer bill, or other charge added to a tax. This newly granted authority only allows municipal chief executives to extend payment deadlines and waive interest and penalties through the end of the fiscal year on June 30, 2020. Under the new state legislation, payments made after June 30, 2020 will be subject to interest and penalties back to June 1, 2020.

I’m grateful to Representative Barrett and Senator Hinds, to our Berkshire legislative delegation, and to the Baker-Polito administration for providing this flexibility to North Adams residents and those throughout the county and the Commonwealth,” Mayor Bernard said. “While the city encourages timely payment of bills, I understand many residents are facing challenges as a result of the COVID-19 pandemic. I hope these extensions will help provide some relief at a time when we all could use one less thing to worry about.

The City of North Adams also will comply with the terms of this new legislation that prohibit termination of services such as water for nonpayment of taxes or fees due on or after March 10, 2020 and paid after the due date but before June 30, 2020. This situation applies when the nonpayment resulted from a demonstrated inability to pay due to the COVID-19 outbreak or the March 10, 2020 emergency declaration by the governor, provided that the inability to pay shall include a demonstrated financial hardship of a resident, including but not limited to loss of employment, serious illness or death of someone within the home.

In addition, following Governor Charlie Baker’s March 31 announcement extending the non-essential business emergency order and guidance for Executive Branch employees until May 4, 2020 in response to the COVID-19 pandemic, municipal offices and buildings in the City of North Adams will remain closed to the public and non-emergency personnel until May 4. The North Adams Public Schools also will remain closed until May 4.

During this time, city staff are available to the public by phone and email. Staff also will work with members of the public to schedule appointments for any business that needs to be conducted in person.

Payments will be accepted by mail, online at www.northadams-ma.gov or may be dropped off in the secure drop boxes installed at each entrance to City Hall. For questions regarding payments, please contact the Treasurer’s Office at 413-662-3000 extension 3044, or email bcooper@northadams-ma.gov.