The office of the County Treasurer was established by the Michigan State Constitution. The County Treasurer is elected on a partisan basis for a 4-year term. The duties and powers of the County Treasurer are provided by state law and by authorization of the Board of Commissioners, under the guidance of the State Treasury Department.
The 2 main roles of the County Treasurer are the collection of delinquent taxes and the custodian of all county funds.
The County Treasurer is also responsible for the sale of dog licenses, tax clearance of deeds and other documents pertaining to tax histories. By statute, the Treasurer is a member of the County Plat Board and the Election Commission and Building Authority and may also serve on other boards such as Planning Board, Local Development Companies, Economic Development Commissions, Retirement Commissions, Transportation Authorities, and more.
The collection of delinquent taxes involves reimbursing all of the taxing units, townships, cities and villages, schools, intermediate schools, libraries, and more for their delinquent taxes through the delinquent tax fund. This may or may not involve the sale of bonds to finance those reimbursements. The county then collects the delinquent taxes with interest. If taxes remain unpaid for 2 years after the due date, the county through an extensive procedure; forecloses on the taxes and sells the properties at auction.
The Treasurer receives money from many sources. The principle source is from property taxes. Other income is received from state and federal grants, interest income from investments, court fines and other service fees. The Treasurer is responsible for investing the idle funds of the county, in accordance with the investment policy as set forth in a Board of Commissioners resolution.