The Washington County Board of Commissioners agreed Sept. 7 to set aside 20% of the proceeds of the sale of tax-forfeited land to be used for buying and maintaining county parks.

The ownership of property that forfeits because of the non-payment of property taxes rests with the state of Minnesota and the county is tasked with the management and disposition of the property.

When a tax-forfeited property is sold to a governmental agency or the public, the proceeds are deposited into the county’s tax-forfeited sale fund.

From the net proceeds, the distribution as established in state law is 20% of fund proceeds to the county for acquisition and maintenance of county parks and recreational areas in counties that have passed the appropriate resolution annually and of the remaining funds, 40% is distributed to the county general fund, 40% to the school district and 20% to the city or township.

The financial implications for the county vary by year, depending on the amount of sale proceeds from tax-forfeited land and maintenance costs.

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