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Danville's delinquent taxpayers asked to pay bills in 30 days

More than 4,000 people owe the city a total of $3 million.

October 05, 2012|Justin Ward | Danville Newsroom Chief

DANVILLE, Va. — Unpaid taxes are adding serious debt in Danville.

This week the city sent thousands of notices to customers telling them to pay it now or suffer the consequences.

Ho Kwon Kyoung said he isn't aware his dry cleaning business owes so much in taxes. Equipment problems have added up, Kyoung said, and took priority over paying.

His business owes more than $17,000 in taxes.

The city is giving him and other delinquent taxpayers 30 days to pay their entire bill.

Now his only option is to close to cover all his debt.

He joins more than 45 hundred delinquent taxpayers including a church that owes nearly $4,000, and a homeowner in the Millionaire's Row area, owing more than $9,000.

According to Danville Finance Director Barbara Dameron, about 7 percent of home and business owners here aren't paying taxes.

That number has recently increased.

It may seem like a small percentage, but it adds up to nearly $3 million the city wants now.

"It's not like maybe a business that might look at your account and say you've been a great paying customer for 20 years and this one time you paid us late, we're going to waive it because you other wise have had a good record. We're not allowed that flexibility," Dameron said.

And with a tight budget already this year, losing money could mean an increase in taxes and cutting services.


It could have paid for events or helped ease shortfalls.

"We advertise in the newspaper that the bills have gone out and that failure to receive a bill does not eliminate your responsibility to pay the tax," Dameron said.

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