NHDP - Failed CEO Walt Havenstein’s Maryland Tax Cheating Scandal Follows Familiar Pattern of Ducking Responsibility


Havenstein’s Approach to Failed Leadership: Step 1) Deny There’s a Problem, Step 2) Try to Blame Others for His Own Actions

Manchester, NH—As failed CEO Walt Havenstein’s doublespeak on his Maryland tax evasion reaches a new low, his tax cheating scandal is following a familiar pattern. In the same approach to failed leadership that marked Havenstein's tenure at SAIC, he first denies that a problem exists, and then finds a way to blame others for his own actions.

After nearly 56 days of refusing to pay Maryland taxpayers the thousands that he owes, Havenstein is now back to claiming he was a Maryland resident the whole time, as he argued in an interview with the Union Leader.

Havenstein also tries to shift the blame for his improper tax breaks onto the State of Maryland instead of owning up to his own actions. But only in Havenstein’s alternate reality can he avoid accountability for signing multiple documents under oath attesting that his Maryland condo was his principal residence in order to receive tax breaks.

“In his campaign for governor, failed CEO Walt Havenstein is relying upon his approach to ducking responsibility for his own problems that he perfected while he ran SAIC into the ground,” said New Hampshire Democratic Party Deputy Communications Director Bryan Lesswing. “Havenstein’s tortured defense for why he hasn’t repaid Maryland taxpayers the thousands that he owes is only rivaled by his attempts to shift blame for his failed strategy and mismanagement at SAIC as the company lost millions of dollars and shed thousands of jobs while it’s stock value plummeted 32%.”

Though Havenstein still seems to be puzzled by his Maryland tax cheating scandal after 56 days, the facts of the case remain quite simple. Havenstein signed multiple documents under oath attesting that his Maryland condominium was his “principal residence” as defined under Maryland law in order to take homestead tax credits.

However, New Hampshire’s Ballot Law Commission effectively certified that Havenstein did not meet Maryland’s definition of “principal resident,” and that he had received thousands of dollars in tax credits he wasn’t entitled to. So, for those keeping track at home: 

First, Havenstein swore under oath that his principal residence was Maryland to claim tax breaks only available to people who considered Maryland their home for all purposes. (Exhibits A and B, NHDP's Reply to Havenstein’s BLC Petition)

Second, Havenstein swore under oath to the New Hampshire Ballot Law Commission that he was really a New Hampshire resident the whole time. 

Now, Havenstein is back to telling the Union Leader that he was a Maryland resident and that is why he has refused for 56 days to pay Maryland taxpayers the thousands of dollars he owes them.  

The only thing consistent about Havenstein's scandals is that he will do everything he possibly can to avoid taking responsibility for his actions.


Havenstein Signed Affidavits that His Primary Residence Was in Maryland to Receive Tax Credits, Then Asserted Before BLC He’d Always Lived in New Hampshire

“Havenstein will be billed for several years of back taxes after officials in Maryland said he accepted tax breaks he shouldn’t have. In 2007, Havenstein signed a pair of affidavits pledging that his primary residence at the time was in Maryland, and for four years, he received tax credits known as the homestead exemption. But upon entering the race for governor, Havenstein asserted that he has always lived in New Hampshire, and the state Ballot Law Commission ruled in his favor. Revenue officials in Maryland told News 9 that Havenstein shouldn’t have accepted benefits in that state.” [WMUR, August 20, 2014]

State of Maryland Determined Havenstein Improperly Claimed Nearly $9,000 in Homestead Tax Credits, Gives him 30 Days to Pay Before Facing Penalties

“The state of Maryland is attempting to collect back taxes it says are owed by Republican gubernatorial candidate Walt Havenstein, according to the head of that state’s tax department. Havenstein received nearly $9,000 in combined tax credits from 2006 through 2011 by claiming he was eligible for the homestead tax credit, in which homeowners must claim a Maryland home as their primary residence, said Robert E. Young, director of Maryland’s Assessment and Taxation Department. […]Young said Havenstein has 30 days to pay the bill without facing interest or penalties.” [Union Leader, August 20, 2014]