Finance Cabinet negotiates settlement with Justice companies for four Eastern Kentucky counties

FRANKFORT, Ky. — Today, the Kentucky Finance and Administration Cabinet through the Department of Revenue (DOR) announced a long-awaited settlement agreement with companies controlled by the Justice family for the payment of delinquent property taxes owed to the state and four Eastern Kentucky counties—Harlan, Knott, Magoffin and Pike.

The companies include Kentucky Fuels, Inc., Sequoia Energy, LLC and A & G Coal, Inc.

“I am happy that we were able to bring much-needed tax revenue to these counties whose budgets have been tightened because of decreasing coal severance revenues and other expenses,” said Finance Cabinet Secretary William M. Landrum III. “This settlement means the state and these counties no longer have to spend time, money and other resources on lawsuits that could take many years with no guarantee that the taxes would be paid.”

More than 50% of this tax revenue will go to the local school districts, with the remainder going to local services such as libraries, fire, and county extension.

The Finance Cabinet spearheaded negotiations with the companies, and DOR worked with the local county attorneys to ensure those counties were in agreement on the amount of taxes that were due.

“I feel like the net tax provided in the global settlement was in Knott County’s best interest,” said Knott County Assistant County Attorney Randy Sloan. “There was a possibility that we would not have been able to recover that much without the settlement.”

“Working with the Department of Revenue, our office has collected the majority of the tax delinquently incurred by Kentucky Fuels,” said Pike County Attorney Keith Hall. “Our office has agreed to a plan that I believe is in the best interest of the state and county as this company has been very cooperative and brings well over a million dollars to catch up all real property taxes.”

The Finance and Administration Cabinet through the DOR works with companies and individuals who are delinquent in paying taxes to the Commonwealth of Kentucky. The department works with the taxpayer so they can become compliant with the tax laws of Kentucky. Part of this agreement also included releasing Kentucky Fuels, Inc.’s active mine license suspensions that DOR had asked the Department for Natural Resources to suspend (per KRS 131.181) because of delinquency.

Additional information about the Finance and Administration Cabinet is available at http://finance.ky.gov/.

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