ALBUQUERQUE, N.M.—State tax officials and the treasurer of New Mexico's most populous county are arguing over whether a new state directive will make it harder for people to catch up on their delinquent property taxes.

The Albuquerque Journal reports (http://bit.ly/SI6hZJ) that Bernalillo County Treasurer Patrick Padilla blasted the state this week for instructing county treasurers not to accept partial payments from people who owe back taxes from 2009 or earlier.

State tax officials want delinquent taxpayers to set up installment plans with the state if they can't pay the full amount.

The state contends it, not the counties, are authorized by law to collect delinquent taxes that are at least two years old.

Padilla contends the terms of the installment plan are impractical. He says the terms include a down payment and paperwork on three denials of credit.

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Information from: Albuquerque Journal, http://www.abqjournal.com