According reports from several of the property owners, their taxes were paid shortly after receiving a reminder from the city clerk the taxes were delinquent. At least one person reported that when he contacted Cadiz officials about the list he was told they had no records of him owing any property taxes.
It was also reported to the newspaper that city officials were telling callers they had no idea where the newspaper obtained a copy of the list and the city did not pay for its publication. However, City Clerk Lisa Rogers said that statement is not true.
She said Monday the city was repeating a statement prepared by City Attorney Allen Wilson.
In the statement it explains that the persons on the list had been notified their tax bill was delinquent and that “as of the date of publication over 50 percent of all names on the list have been paid.”
“It is true,” explained Vyron Mitchell, editor and publisher of The Record, “the city of Cadiz did not pay for the publication. The list is a matter of public record and the newspaper publishes a number of such records from time to time.
“The newspaper received the list directly from the City Clerk after we made a request for the delinquent taxpayers. At that time, Rogers failed to note that any of the property owners had since paid their tax bill.”
Mitchell explained that the newspaper’s request asked for a list of those persons who were sent bills for delinquent taxes.
Mitchell noted that Mayor Lyn Bailey had apparently sent a news release to WKDZ “indicating that Mayor Lyn Bailey had released a statement saying he “apologized for any embarrassment” caused by the publication.
“He doesn’t have to apologize on behalf of The Cadiz Record. If he felt that bad about the publication, he could have picked up the telephone and called our office.
“He hasn’t done that. Nor has the city clerk.”
Mitchell went on to say that publication of the list was not meant to embarrass anyone and that if “any of the taxpayers who were mailed the notices had paid prior to our request then it would have certainly been better if the clerk had noted that point.”