Seven delinquent tax bills for the 2012 tax year totaling nearly $2 million are Marshall County Sheriff Kevin Cecil's main focus, he told the Marshall County Commission Tuesday.
During a meeting of the commission, Cecil presented all delinquent taxes for the 2012 tax year, which total $1.985 million. That is a drastic increase from the 2011 tax year, when the total amount owed was $662,103.
However, Cecil told the commission the majority of that amount - $1,342,097 - is owed on six bills attributed to Chevron USA Inc. He said those tax bills initially were issued to AB Resources, though Chevron legally assumed all payments when it purchased the company last year. He said there has been contact with Chevron regarding the outstanding bill.
"They didn't think they were responsible," Cecil told the commission.
However, Commissioners Brian Schambach and Bob Miller said in purchasing the company, officials at Chevron should have been aware of any outstanding financial issues.
"They would have had to have done their due diligence before they made the purchase," Schambach said.
Late Tuesday, Chevron spokeswoman Lee Ann Wainwright said the company is working to resolve the issue.
"On May 8, 2013, Chevron was notified that the assets we acquired in 2011 had a tax liability associated with them from the 2010 production year," Wainwright said. "Chevron has been in contact with the chief tax deputy for Marshall County and has assured them that issue will be rectified in the near future."
Meanwhile, Cecil said another outstanding account is one registered to RG Steel for $17,363. He said there has been no contact regarding that bill, as the county does not know who owns the company at this time.
County Administrator Betsy Frohnapfel said RG owes back taxes on personal property such as equipment rather than on real property in the form of a building or real estate. She said RG owned the personal property at the time when property values were assessed; since then, however, the company has entered bankruptcy. She said RG's tax bills in the past always have been sent to a post office box in Maryland, and they had always been paid prior to this year.
Frohnapfel was unable to verify the location of RG's equipment on Tuesday.