Friday, February 13, 2004
2 Fayette individuals, 1 business make delinquent taxpayer list
By J. FRANK LYNCH
Just two individuals and one business from Fayette County were among the 400 names included on the state Department of Revenues first online posting of delinquent taxpayers, which went online Monday.
The Web site intended to shame tax delinquents into paying down an estimated $1.6 billion due the state drew attention in the days leading up to its launch in anticipation of politicians, entertainers or sports figures whose names might appear. But for the most part, the names listed are unremarkable.
Fayetteville waste carrier Associated Haulers Inc. owes the state an estimated $136,832 in sales and use tax dating back to 1997, according to the Web site (www.gatax.org).
Among the 200 individuals listed as delinquent on state income tax were Clifford Levingston, whose last known address was in Fayette County. Levingston owes $177,811.25 dating back to Aug. 2, 2000, according to the state. No current local address for Levingston could be found, however.
A former member of the Atlanta Hawks, Levingston was last in the local news as a partner in the A&T Teen Market in Fayetteville that was shut down in 2000 when the clubs manager faced numerous criminal charges involving lewd activities going on in and around the club. Levingston was never charged with any crime, and it is not known if he is still a Fayette resident.
Also listed was a Michael Williams of Fayetteville, owing $163,277.48 as of Sept. 15 of last year.
By far the largest individual tax scofflaw statewide was Larry M. Kraxberger of Alphretta, who owes Georgia $1.3 million in personal income tax, the Web site showed.
The business with the largest tax bill due was Star Group Assurance Inc., based in Fulton County, owing $2,321,535 in back sales tax to the state.
Just three other businesses statewide owed more than $1 million apiece: Rob Smith Chevrolet and Universal Chevrolet of Cobb County, $1,362,661; Pendleton Jewelers of Fulton County, $1,384,558; and Arthur Hulin of Clayton County, $1,963,754.
The Department of Revenue Web site includes a disclaimer stating that the amount shown is an estimate and does not account for partial payments or agreements already made to pay-down the debt. It also reflects fees and penalties applied since the original tax bill was due.
The postings are intended to embarass delinquent taxpayers into coming clean, and is a last-ditch attempt, state officials say.
Taxpayers who are listed have received multiple notices of the tax liability by the Department of Revenue to the last known address of the taxpayer within the records of the department, as required by law, and have been afforded the opportunity to pay the liability in full or to explain any discrepancies in information contained in the notices, reads the Web page.
The site will be updated regularly and additional names will be added, the state says. It offers a suggestion for keeping your name off the list: Pay state taxes on time.