No wonder Miami Springs Mayor Zavier Garcia made it a point in his campaign to plead for lower taxes.
Not only is there a $1,803.41 state tax lien on his company, ZMG Media, which we reported about last week, but on June 8 the IRS filed a $198,672.75 federal tax lien with the Miami-Dade County Recorder's Office for unpaid back taxes.
Records show that the mayor -- who said "please reduce our taxes" at a candidate's forum before his April election -- owes back taxes in five of the past ten years:
In addition, a statement of financial interests filed by Garcia last January, when he campaigned for mayor, does not list any liabilities. Filers who do not have any liabilities or major debts must write "none" or "n/a" on the form, according to the instructions. This section of Garcia's form was left blank.
Garcia has been the subject of recent New Times stories. One showed that he owes $323,040.21 on his home that is in foreclosure and which he purchased in 2001 for $167,000.
Another story reported that prosecutors are eying Garcia's campaign finance statements, which show expenses totaling $19,328.51 went back to a company Garcia lists as his secondary source of income.
Last April, Garcia was elected mayor by 54 percent of voters in Miami Springs, a small city near Miami International Airport with a population of 13,000.
During his 2011 bid for office, signs depicting little green shade trees with the slogan "working for us" sprouted on lawns across the city as Garcia raised more than $63,000 -- the most in the city's history.
The two most important issues facing Miami Springs, according to Garcia, who spoke at a 2011 candidates' forum, were to maintain the quality of services and reduce taxes.
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SHOW ME HOW
"Reduce our taxes," said Garcia said at the forum.
"Please reduce our taxes."