Havenstein Hires High-Priced DC Lawyer to Fight Against Paying $9,000 in Taxes He Evaded in Maryland
Manchester, NH -- Once again, failed CEO Walt Havenstein is following a familiar and troubling pattern of refusing to take responsibility for his own poor decisions and actions as he tries to blame his tax- cheating scandal on the state he ripped off for thousands of dollars.
According to a report from Politico Pro, Havenstein is now doing all he can to play the victim, hiring a high-priced Washington, D.C., lawyer to fight his $9,000 tax bill for misleading Maryland on his property taxes. But the truth remains that he swore under oath multiple times that he was a principal resident of Maryland in order to receive thousands in tax credits that he wasn't allowed to take under Maryland law. Since then, he swore under oath to the New Hampshire Ballot Law Commission that he was a resident of New Hampshire the whole time.
“Failed CEO Walt Havenstein can protest his Maryland tax evasion scandal all he wants, but the fact of the matter is he can’t have it both ways, and by fighting to get on the ballot in New Hampshire, he confirmed that he had been misleading Maryland on his taxes,” said New Hampshire Democratic Party Deputy Communications Director Bryan Lesswing. “Now, instead of just accepting responsibility for his actions, Havenstein - who could afford to give his campaign nearly $1.5 million because he was severely lacking in support from Granite Staters - is still fighting against having to pay the $9,000 in taxes he evaded in Maryland."
Though Havenstein alleges he’s being treated differently from all other Maryland tax evaders, the truth is that the State of Maryland has pursued numerous politicians of both parties for improperly claiming Maryland homestead tax credits. McClatchy reports that in 2009, then-associate director of Maryland's tax office Robert Young, said that California Rep. Doris Matsui (a Democrat) owed thousands and that "she will be assessed penalties and interest for not paying back taxes dating to 2005." McClatchy adds that other members of congress have "encountered similar situations" by improperly claiming homestead tax credits.
"From running SAIC into the ground as his failed strategy cost the company millions of dollars and thousands of employees to pledging to repeal health coverage despite cashing in on the health law as CEO, Havenstein has time and again tried to duck responsibility for his actions and distract from his own failed leadership,” added Lesswing.
For excerpts from the Politico Pro report see below or here:
[...] Havenstein filed a series of public-records requests Tuesday with Maryland officials — including Democratic Gov. Martin O’Malley’s office — to determine whether state authorities were acting with a political motive when they made allegations late last month suggesting he skirted state tax law. Aides say Havenstein has also paid the $9,000 in back taxes Maryland says he owes, but only under protest as they await a response to their records request.
Havenstein allies are quick to compare the situation to legal woes that have dogged New Jersey Gov. Chris Christie, Wisconsin Gov. Scott Walker and Texas Gov. Rick Perry — all of whom have rejected questions about their actions as trumped up by Democrats hoping to weaken them politically.
“They’re doing it around the country,” said former New Hampshire Gov. John Sununu. “It’s not [a] stretch to be very suspicious when the charges against Walt come from a state that has a Democratic governor.” [...]
At issue are a series of tax breaks Havenstein received on a home he owned in Maryland from 2007 to 2011. The state and Montgomery County offer “homestead” tax credits to anyone who resides there most of the year. Havenstein signed affidavits declaring the Maryland home his “principal residence,” assuring his eligibility for the credits. But in public comments as he began his campaign, Havenstein asserted that he has always lived in New Hampshire.
On that basis, Maryland officials determined that his eligibility should be revoked and that he should pay back the $9,000 in credits he received. The revelations quickly made headlines in New Hampshire last last month, and Maryland’s tax director, Robert Young — an O’Malley appointee — confirmed details for news outlets in New Hampshire. Young’s on-the-record statements to the Granite State press corps rankled Havenstein’s camp, which argues he gave more details to reporters than the candidate himself received about the tax issue.
But Young says he merely confirmed facts for reporters who reached out to him and that Havenstein is being treated the same as any Maryland taxpayer.
“Mr. Havenstein, who happens to be a political candidate, he’s no different than any other person where there’s information that comes forth saying he wasn’t using his property as his principal residence,” Young said.
In making the public records request, Havenstein’s attorney, former FEC commissioner William McGinley of Jones Day, argued the “confusing and clumsy” attempt to paint Havenstein as a tax delinquent “severely departed” from standard processes — offering taxpayers a chance to review the claims against them and appeal before sending them the bill. [...]