Two months after news broke that the City of Oak Park was delinquent on federal payroll taxes, accountants have totaled liabilities, penalties, and interest to find that Oak Park owes the Internal Revenue Service (IRS) just over $151,000.
The announcement was made during the June City Council Meeting on Monday night.
In mid-April, City Clerk Monica Slater told AllOnGeorgia that the city was delinquent in federal payroll taxes and withholdings for the seven quarters dating back to 2016. She said it was “a major oversight and I take full responsibility.” In an interview at City Hall, Slater said it was something that ‘slipped through the cracks’ and was not intentional. “I have nothing to gain personally from not filing these returns,” she said while providing the supporting documents to AllOnGeorgia. You can read the background on the story here.
Monday night, Slater told Council that the accountant brought in to sort out the issue had provided a spreadsheet with the itemized list of details. No penalties have been assessed since the issue came to light in April. Additionally, a $45,000 deposit was made to the IRS by Oak Park to begin the process of paying back the balance owed. The payment was made on May 31.
|Form 941 Liability|
|3/31/17||$13,930.52||$5,750.43||$807.99||Marked “need to amend”|
|6/30/17||$14,767.37||Marked “no return”|
Penalties and interest may still be assessed for the years a return was not filed or may need to be amended.
Slater told AllOnGeorgia that all of the money is accounted for and has been sitting in the Public Safety fund account. The money deducted from employee paychecks has not been spent, she said.
Initially, city officials said the hope was to have the accountant negotiate the penalties and interest, but research by the accountant indicated that, even before Slater’s tenure, payroll taxes were not paid on time, so the IRS may be less forgiving about the penalties and interest. It is still being negotiated.
A $31,000 payment will be made in June and another $31,000 payment will be made in July. The rest will be paid after the final numbers are known.