Sweeney Tax Claim Refuted

11 Feb

From Arnold Patch:

Deborah Lewis, Arnold’s finance director, recently told Patch that the city receives no direct payment from personal property taxes.

“Whether we receive money indirectly, I don’t know,” Lewis said. “But we don’t get a share of personal property tax money.”

This, of course, blows up City Attorney Bob Sweeney’s entire justification for removing city council candidate Shaun Missey from the ballot. Perhaps Sweeney should have talked to Lewis before interfering in the election. This is further proof that this stunt was politically motivated. If he was really interested in the facts, shouldn’t he, or City Clerk Diane Waller, have consulted with the person the city pays to take care of finances before proceeding? Someone must have told Waller, sometime after the 2011 election (when Randy Crisler and Bill Moritz were allowed to stay on the ballot despite being late on their personal property taxes, or PPT), that PPT counts as a “municipal tax” and can be used to disqualify candidates. It clearly wasn’t Lewis, so it must have been Sweeney, whose job duties do not entail finances (other than putting an excessive amount of Arnold’s money in his pocket).

Sweeney said Arnold gets money from the road and bridge fund that gets money from the PPT. That may be true, but it would almost surely be money that is allocated by the County Council. It would be a huge stretch to call this a tax owed to the city.

Also humorous is this:

Patch tried unsuccessfully to reach Sweeney several times last week.

He’s probably trying to formulate a response. He might say that indirect payments are enough to make the law apply to Arnold. If that’s the case, then crack tax investigator Waller should be looking into the federal and state income tax status of candidates, since some of that money undoubtedly indirectly makes it to Arnold coffers. Patch has requested a memo that Sweeney wrote on this subject. It should be enlightening.

I am happy to see the Patch pursuing this story. From the correspondence I’ve had with the Leader, they seem to think they’ve already told the full story, despite not mentioning the 2011 contradiction. They are looking into the Byrnes Mill aspect of this, although the reporter didn’t seem to think it would amount to something newsworthy. We’ll see.

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One Response to “Sweeney Tax Claim Refuted”

  1. wrongonred February 11, 2013 at 5:07 pm #

    They will refuse to release the memo on the grounds there is pending litigation in 3…..2…..1, so we will never hear Sweeney’s enlightening response, and unquestionable logic for his rationale. We are just too dumb to see the differences between then and now.

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