Find out more →

Get unlimited access. Become a digital member!

Friday, August 15, 2014

Another Republican tax cheat? Blue Hog notes Secretary of State Mark Martin's improper homestead tax exemption

Posted By on Fri, Aug 15, 2014 at 2:49 PM

click to enlarge MARTIN: Milked the state for thousands of dollars in improper tax credits.
  • MARTIN: Milked the state for thousands of dollars in improper tax credits.
Could another Arkansas politician end up in hot water over homestead tax credits? Remember, Republican gubernatorial candidate Asa Hutchinson improperly claimed homestead property tax exemptions in two counties for four years — 2008 through 2011 — though state law limits you to one $350 exemption. The Blue Hog Report blog (which has a history of breaking stories that turn out to be headaches for Arkansas Republicans) has done some digging and it appears that Secretary of State Mark Martin took the homestead exemption on both a house in Rogers and a house in Praire Grove, at least since 2008 and possibly as far back as 2003. Here's Blue Hog burrowing into all the details

Blue Hog looked at tax records back to 2008 (available online). If Martin has improperly taken homestead credits since 2008, that would amount to $2,100 in improper homestead credits — or $3,850 if he's done the same thing since he first purchased the homes in 2003. The penalty and repayment only legally applies three years back, so Martin would only be on the hook for repaying $1,050 in credits, plus a penalty of $1,050.  Hutchinson repaid his debt in full after his improper claims were reported by the D-G's Mike Wickline. If Martin has indeed illegally claimed exemptions, will he follow suit? 

Here's the backstory, as reported by Blue Hog: Martin and his wife entered a mortgage in April of 2003 for a house in Rogers, then entered a mortgage for a second house in Praire Grove in August of that year. Both mortgages include clauses that the property is the borrower’s “principal residence” and will continue be the principal residence for a year (boilerplate language for mortgages). The Martins appear to have knowingly been in obvious violation of their mortgage agreement when they bought a second home with the same primary-residence clause months after the first one. Oops. This could have theoretically gotten the Martins in hot water with their lender, but the point here is that Martin presented each house as a primary residence, illegally claiming a homestead exemption on both.  

Wickline, by the way, had a story in the paper last weekend suggesting that illegal use of the homestead tax credit costs the state millions per year. 

UPDATE: Martin's spokesperson responded to my queries in an e-mail: "The Secretary of State's office does not respond to issues that are not office related."

Tags: , , , , ,

Speaking of...

Comments (12)

Showing 1-12 of 12

Add a comment

 
Subscribe to this thread:
Showing 1-12 of 12

Add a comment

More by David Ramsey

  • Long Underwear, the Useless Web, Organized Konfusion, Getting away for a while and more

    I recommend getting away for a while. Me and the missus are out here eating Walmart produce in the country and it is all right. The German came to visit us this week and showed us a fine new way to cook pasta. The German – we met him on our honeymoon trip to Europe and on his direction had swallowed some mind-benders and spent twelve hours in a nightclub in East Berlin, where we had decided, mid-dancing, to move to Little Rock, Arkansas.
    • Nov 14, 2014
  • The GOP in charge in Arkansas

    What will it mean?
    • Nov 13, 2014
  • More »

Most Shared

  • The Quapaw return to Arkansas

    Casino try a good bet.
  • Jean Gordon to receive Truth Teller award

    Jean Gordon, who's worked a half-century in just about every social justice and peace movement you can name, will receive the Arkansas Community Institute's 2014 Community Truth Teller Award at a program at 5:30 p.m. Thursday at the library's Darragh Center
  • The French Hill 'tis better to receive-than-give open line

    An open line that features new Congressman French HIll's antipathy in the Catholic newspaper to Obamacare as a "giveaway" to drug companies and hospitals. A Catholic nurse points out that children and other people in need are the real beneficiaries of this giveaway, along with Catholic hospitals.
  • Fan happiness over Hogs' win over LSU costs UA $25,000 UPDATED

    The University of Arkansas will be fined $25,000 by the SEC because Hog fans stormed the football field after Saturday's victory over LSU snapped a long SEC losing streak. It was a second offense by the UA of the conference's "access to competition area" policy.
  • GOP's new Obamacare attack

    It was inevitable. The long crusade against the Patient Protection and Affordable Care Act has pivoted from a battle against socialism to a populist war against big business: The program known as Obamacare is now supposed to be merely a feed trough for the captains of industry, not a government program to force health care on the undeserving poor.

Most Viewed

Most Recent Comments

Blogroll

 

© 2014 Arkansas Times | 201 East Markham, Suite 200, Little Rock, AR 72201
Powered by Foundation