MEMPHIS, Tenn. — FOX13 is demanding answers after finding out more than a dozen companies with tax breaks owe almost $200,000 in delinquent taxes.
These companies received pilots or payments in lieu of taxes, which means they were already paying a reduced amount of taxes in the first place.
FOX13 spoke with Regina Newman, the Shelby County trustee who put together this list of pilot recipients.
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According to Newman, these recipients are already getting hit with penalities, but they could be at risk of losing these tax breaks all together.
Newman told FOX13 that since Feb. 28, her staff has made three attempts to get these companies with pilots to pay their taxes payments for 2018.
With pilots, these companies pay a reduced tax rate.
But more than a month later, there is more than $192,000 in delinquent payments.
Ten companies with pilots from the downtown Memphis Commission and two companies with pilots from the Edge board are on the list.
So how does this affect you?
FOX13 crunched the numbers and in Shelby County, the school district offers $15,000 performance-based raises for teachers. This tax balance is the same as 128 of these raises.
For public safety, $192,000 is the same as the base salary for three Shelby County Sheriff Deputies.
FOX13 spoke with Shelby County Commissioner Van Turner about these findings. According to Turner, it is up to the DMC and Edge to hold these companies accountable for paying up, but commissioners will continue watching this issue.
"Every little penny, what we can save for our tax payers is a penny saved that can be used to the benefit of all Shelby County, so we're very interested in making sure we do what we can do to collect all funds that are owed to the county," Turner said.
Companies with Edge and DMC pilots have not had their tax breaks terminated.
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