Miami Springs Mayor Zavier Garcia Delinquent on His Taxes

While his constituents watch taxes rise and home values slide, Miami Springs Mayor Zavier Garcia has not paid property taxes and owes back taxes on his business.

Since Riptide posted a story last week that reported Garcia was in foreclosure, details of other fiscal indiscretions have emerged.

Since the foreclosure filing in 2009, Garcia's bank -- not Garcia -- has paid property taxes on his home to the tune of $16,952.29, records show. Banks sometimes pay property taxes on homes in foreclosure to protect their investment.

Garcia now owes $323,040.21 on the home he purchased in 2001 for

$167,000, records show.

"For the record, you are negligent in your lack of truth and facts, and have failed to properly research public records," Garcia said. "My home is current and up to date on payment of all property taxes.  This has always been the case.  I have never failed to pay my property taxes since owing my home in 2001."

During his 2011 campaign interview, Garcia said the biggest issue facing

the city -- located adjacent to Miami International Airport -- is its

"commercial versus residential tax base."

But Garcia's own business owes back taxes, too. Garcia is president of

Miami Springs-based ZMG Media Inc., or what he describes as a

"grassroots gorilla marketing" firm.

According to a tax lien filed in 2010 by the Florida Department of Tax

Revenue, ZMG Media owes $1,803.41.

"My wife and I are at the brink of resolving this matter with our bank

and really don't feel that anything good could come from you doing so

[writing about it]," said Garcia last week via text message.

KEEP MIAMI NEW TIMES FREE... Since we started Miami New Times, it has been defined as the free, independent voice of Miami, and we'd like to keep it that way. With local media under siege, it's more important than ever for us to rally support behind funding our local journalism. You can help by participating in our "I Support" program, allowing us to keep offering readers access to our incisive coverage of local news, food and culture with no paywalls.
Freelancer Theo Karantsalis is a San Francisco native who lovingly served Miami’s Black community for many years as an offbeat librarian. He speaks softly and carries a big pen.
Contact: Theo Karantsalis