New fee on payments to James City County effective July 1

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financeBeginning July 1, a 2.95 percent “convenience fee” will be applied to all credit and debit card transactions made to any James City County department.

The new fee will be applied to payments made in person, online and by telephone to departments including, but not limited to, the Treasurer’s Office, Parks and Recreation, Building Safety and Permits, Colonial Community Corrections and Planning.

James City Counter Treasurer Jennifer Tomes said the convenience fee is being implemented to offset growing costs absorbed by the county in recent years as a result of accepting payments by credit card.

The county started accepting credit and debit card payments on taxes, fines and fees in July 2007. During fiscal year 2008, the cost absorbed by the county for accepting the payments was roughly $40,000.

In fiscal year 2015, James City County absorbed more than $320,000 in costs related to credit card payments. With the 2.95 percent convenience fee, the county can continue providing credit and debit payment services without incurring a financial loss.

The percentage of the fee was determined by estimating the projected costs associated with accepting credit and debit payments. The 2.95 percent figure was deemed sufficient to cover the costs completely.