Bouncing checks plague DBI 

Department of Building Inspection is having a problem of its customers writing bad checks.

“Our customers continue to pull permits and pay with checks with insufficient funds,” said DBI director Vivian Day in a budget memo.

Between July 1, 2009 and January 13, 2010, a total of $148,000 was paid to DBI by checks that bounced. Once this happened, the department notified the check writer and either suspended or revoked the permit and began a collection process.

“Of the $148,000 we have been able to collect $118,000 thus far,” she said. The remaining $22,000 was refered to the Treasurer Tax collector to pursue, but the problem there is the tax collector keeps 25 percent of the amount they receive as a service charge.

“Assuming that they will be able to collect the $22,000, we will only get back $16,600,” she said. “We do not have equipment to electronically debit payments at the time that the check is issued. Purchasing the equipment will improve revenue collection.”

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