Jefferson County taxes on city property are due Friday, Feb. 15.
In less austere times, a payment dropped in a blue mailbox by the posted pickup time (usually 5 p.m.) would receive a postal date of Feb. 15 and thus be an on-time payment, even if delivered on the following day or two.
Not so anymore. With mail processing done in Syracuse, your envelope mailed in Watertown on Friday will carry a Monday postmark and thus a late postmark. Immediate penalty: 6 percent! Watertown Comptroller James Mills is coldly unforgiving and ruled only by the postmark. My learning experience: $145.