In response to the statement released by the Committee to Re-Elect Lou Raptakis in regards to unpaid back taxes by his opponent's landscaping company, Dave Gorman admits that a mistake was made in an annual tax report several years ago that has never been corrected. As of July 23, the tax bill for D. Gorman Landscaping shows a balance of $9,640.65 in back tangible property taxes and penalties to the Town of Coventry - an amount that Gorman said is inaccurate.
"I don't dispute the fact that my business owes taxes to the town of Coventry. What's in question is the amount that is owed," said Gorman. " My attorneys and my accountant are working to determine what that amount is. Once that amount has been determined, I will absolutely do what's right and pay the amount owed."
Gorman explained that there is documentation from his attorney to the town stating that an error had been made, however there has been no reply with the exception of additional tax bills with interest and penalties.
He also suggested that Raptakis' tax record may not be spotless either.
"I wish this would have been all behind us by now, but I am not going to let this change the way I am running my campaign," he said. "I'm still planning on being clean around the issues. We will march forward and certainly press the real issues."
According to Gorman, another inaccuracy in Raptakis' statement is that he is repeatedly referred to as the current Union President for the Coventry Professional Firefighters Local 3372.
"I am not union president anymore, " he said. "I resigned when I decided to run for senate. Vice President Russ Giles is now acting president until we hold elections."
Gorman, who was recently endorsed by the RI Democratic Party believes that over the course of his political career, Raptakis has not made significant progress for his constituents.
"The fact that the democratic party has endorsed me, a new face, rather than an 18-year political veteran speaks volumes in regards to how they feel towards him and his records," he said.
"Less than two weeks after becoming a candidate, it has now become obvious how Mr. Raptakis plans on campaigning and his methods should be a major concern to all the voters," Gorman continued. "I believe a candidate will serve in office the same way he campaigns. Mr. Raptakis is campaigning negatively and in my opinion that's a clear indication as to how he will serve the constituents if elected. Voters are tired of those tactics. "