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The Hamilton County trustee's office has repaid about 300 taxpayers roughly $150,000 that they overpaid while in bankruptcy, the county trustee said.

"It wasn't as much as we thought it was going to be," Trustee Bill Hullander told the County Commission last week.

He also said the county is not going to pursue $16,477 in underpayments and lost revenue because it would cost more than that to collect it.

The repayments are resolving a federal probe into the trustee's office that began under Hullander's predecessor.

The federal investigation examined whether the office under former Trustee Carl Levi mishandled payments made toward delinquent property taxes by those in Chapter 13 bankruptcy, according to newspaper archives.

The county is accused of failing to give credit for partial payments, so that it received more from property owners than it legally was owed.

In other cases, property owners in bankruptcy were charged interest penalties for late or unpaid taxes, even though their bankruptcy status should have shielded them from such penalties.

County commissioners said Thursday that they agreed with the decision not to collect the $16,477.

"Sometimes you just have to cut your losses," Commissioner Joe Graham said.

Those with questions about their property taxes can call the trustee's office at 209-7270.

Contact staff writer Dan Whisenhunt at dwhisenhunt @timesfreepress.com or 423-757-6481. Follow him on Twitter at http://twitter.com/DWhisenhunt.

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