Corbin City Manager owes thousands in unpaid taxes
Corbin's top city official is mired under the weight of an ever-increasing pile of unpaid property taxes, owing more than $4,500 to Knox County on three separate properties - and some of the unpaid bills date back a decade.
Based on a News Journal assessment of Knox County tax records, Corbin City Manager Bill Ed Cannon currently owes roughly $4,561 in property taxes to the county.
In the latest list of the county's delinquent property taxes, Cannon's name is listed three times: twice in connection with lots in Cardinal Heights Subdivision, where he resides, and again on an unpaid bill associated with a home on Roy Kidd Ave. According to the latest figures from the clerk's office, Cannon owes $713.50 on the Roy Kidd Ave. home, formerly leased to the Knox County Ambulance Service. He owes $1,625.73 on a lot in Cardinal Heights Subdivision on Robin Road for the 2010 tax year. Another $240.16 bill for an adjacent property is currently rolled into a lawsuit brought against Cannon, and his wife Rose, over a delinquent 2009 tax bill for $242.32. With fees, the unpaid 2009 bill, at the time the lawsuit was filed, would be $368.94.
The bill that has resulted in litigation was purchased last year by Tax Ease Lien Servicing, LLC, a company based in Dallas, TX that specializes in collecting unpaid property taxes for a profit. The company, and others, will purchase unpaid property tax bills in bulk and then charge lucrative fees that taxpayers must pay in order to avoid foreclosure.
In the lawsuit, Tax Ease is asking that the property be sold at auction to pay what is owed, plus the fees.
Cannon's tax problems stretch back more than a couple of years, however.
He owes $981.79 on an outstanding 2002 tax bill on the Roy Kidd Ave. home and an additional $630.74 on the same property for 2001.
"It's disgraceful," said Corbin City Commissioner Joe "Butch" White, who is serving his first term on the city's five-member Board of Commissioners. "These things shouldn't happen ... I think everybody should pay their taxes. Nobody is exempt, I don't care how high you go."
White noted that a portion of Cannon's $78,000 annual salary from the city comes from taxpayers who live in the Knox County portion of Corbin. He said Cannon's tax woes are a source of embarrassment for city leaders and send a bad message to the public. He added the issue is something he plans on discussing with fellow commissioners at the next regular meeting of the Board of Commissioners Aug. 8.
Corbin Mayor Willard McBurney declined to comment on the situation. Phil Gregory, the Commission's longest serving active member, also refused to comment.
Cannon is currently vacationing and phone messages seeking comment were not returned by press time.
Knox County officials say each month the bills are delinquent, fees and penalties continue to pile up.
Also, some of the bills could be sold again soon to companies or individuals who wish to collect on them. Sale of Knox County's delinquent 2010 property tax bills is set for Aug. 26 at 10:00 a.m. at the Knox County Clerk's office.
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