Raptakis Calls on Primary Opponent to Pay Back Taxes

David Gorman, Union President of Central Coventry Fire District, owns a landscaping company which owes property taxes and penalties to town dating back to 2008.


State Senate candidate Lou Raptakis is calling on his District 33 Democratic primary opponent, David Gorman, to pay back nearly $10,000 in back tangible property taxes and penalties to the town of Coventry dating back to 2008. 

Raptakis said David Gorman, who is the union President of the Central Coventry Fire District and is currently serving as interim Fire Chief due to the departure of former Chief Robert Seltzer, owns a landscaping company—D. Gorman Landscaping—which has not paid any tangible property taxes to the town since 2009 and made only a partial payment on its 2008 tax bill. 

“As a candidate for public office and an employee of a local fire district, Mr. Gorman has an obligation to pay his taxes in a timely way,” said Raptakis. “The last thing we need is a State Senator who wants everyone else’s taxes to go up while he isn’t even paying his own.”

Records obtained from the Coventry Tax Collector’s Office show that D. Gorman Landscaping owes $7,806.62 in principle and $1,834.03 in penalties for a total of $9,640.65. The company made a $227 payment on a $908.28 tangible property tax bill back in 2008 and has not made any tax payments to the town since.

Raptakis noted that D. Gorman Landscaping promotes itself as “your most reliable landscaping service in the Rhode Island area” with more than 15 years experience (www.dgormanlandscaping.com). Raptakis noted that as a long-time business owner in Coventry, he has always made it a point to keep up to date on his tax payments, especially given his role as a public official.                    

As a union official with the Central Coventry Fire District, Gorman has consistently pushed to collect delinquent back taxes and put delinquent properties up for tax sale. Raptakis said the district has not made available how many properties are currently up for tax sale, but based on discussions in recent board meetings and comparable numbers from the Anthony Fire District, there may be anywhere from 30-60 residential and commercial properties being pursued aggressively by the District and President Gorman for back taxes. 

A review of minutes on file with the Secretary of State’s office shows that at the September 20 and May 17, 2011 meetings of the fire district, Gorman pushed hard to improve collections on delinquent taxes. (The most recent minutes of the meetings of the Central Coventry Fire District have yet to be filed with the Secretary of State, with the January 17, 2012 meeting being the last available.)

Raptakis said Gorman’s failure to pay his town tangible property taxes raises the question of whether he is paying tangible property taxes to the Fire District. The Central Coventry Fire District tax roll is not made available to the public and Raptakis said even if Gorman is paying those taxes, it only raises the question of why he feels he can take a pass on paying his bills with the Town of Coventry.

“If you refuse to pay your own taxes, you shouldn’t be asking the people of Coventry to trust you to represent your interests in the General Assembly and you certainly be standing up at Fire District meetings screaming to go after people who are struggling to pay their taxes in this economy,” said Raptakis.  “It’s time for Mr. Gorman to get his own business in order before he presumes to go after other delinquent taxpayers or claim that he speak for us on tax issues at the State House.”

Submitted by the Committee to Re-Elect Lou Raptakis

Click here for Dave Gorman's response.

coventry voter-Jay July 26, 2012 at 01:51 PM
You cant blame Raptakis for the sewer project. . The Coventry Town Council pushed that project and wrote the legislation with their lawyers. Go to the pump station on Sandy Bottom rd, there is a big bronze plaque on the pump building, Bill Hall, Ron Wood, Kevin McGee, Frank Hyde Ect..... When the TC passes a resolution and sends it to the Gen.Assembly for ratification the state delegation has the responsibility if putting it through. . Whether you agree with the sewer project or not is not the issue in this case. The funding source for the project is the biggest slap to the taxpayers because this project was placed 100% ON THE BACKS OF THOSE ALONG THE SEWER LINE. You can blame the TC for that.. . In most cities and towns their sewer projects were 90% or so funded by the Feds because it was a Fed project so the taxpayer had to come up with $.10 on the dollar. In Coventry the TC initiated the project along with a large company on H.Hill rd, and the TC miss-led the voters into thinking the company was paying for the project that is until the first round of sewer bills went out. .
coventry voter-Jay July 26, 2012 at 01:51 PM
I don't disagree with the fact we needed sewers in Coventry. I do disagree with how it was forced on us without a vote of the people. In a representative form of government you get what you pay for. In Coventry we have been electing from the same group of stooges for 24 years. . You get the government you deserve, Raptakas put forth the Bill he was asked to by the TC, Blame them for that one good or bad.
coventry voter-Jay July 26, 2012 at 02:00 PM
So you get my point........When the TC passes a resolution or the voters vote in a charter change ect... the state delegation has the responsibility if putting it through, even if they disagree with it. . Unless your name is Guthrie or Tomasso as was the case last session. This pair that's beat any full house fought against the voters of Coventry and tried to change and eliminate the charter changes that passed by vote in the general election. Some of the changes took a little control away from the Coventry Dems and they wouldn't have it and fought against the will of the voters in Coventry.
Realistic voter July 26, 2012 at 04:11 PM
Looks like you have been eating to much of Lou's pizza there Mike!


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