(YOUNGSTOWN, Ohio)—Ohio Attorney General Mike DeWine today announced a new program to help local governments collect debt owed to them. The Local Government Collections Services Program will allow the Attorney General to collect debt on behalf of local governments.
"Many local governments are feeling the strain that our economy has put on their budgets," said Attorney General DeWine. "Our Local Government Collections Services Program will help counties, cities, townships, and villages recover money they are owed and free up resources that otherwise would have been devoted to collections."
The Ohio Attorney General's Collection Enforcement Section serves as the chief collection agent for all state agencies, boards, commissions, and universities. A recent change to state law allows the Attorney General to now collect debt on behalf of local governments.
The Local Government Collections Services Program will allow local governments across Ohio to enter into a Memorandum of Understanding with the Attorney General's Office to collect debt they are owed. The debt must be final and greater than $100. Examples of debt that can be collected under the program include statutory fines and court costs. Utilizing the program can allow local governments to offset a debtor's state tax refund or lottery winnings to recover the debt owed.
DeWine made the announcement at the Ohio Attorney General's Youngstown Office, where the Local Government Collections Services Program will be operated. Because the program is funded by collection costs passed to the debtor, the program will bear no additional cost to the General Revenue Fund or Ohio taxpayers.
"I encourage local governments to contact our office to take advantage of this new, helpful program," Attorney General DeWine said.
Lisa Hackley: 614-466-3840
Dan Tierney: 614-466-3840
Local Government Collection Services Program brochure (PDF)