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State comes after Peck

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CANTON — The state Department of Taxation and Finance has filed judgments totaling more than $50,000 against a business operated by St. Lawrence County Legislator Donald A. Peck, R-Gouverneur, for nonpayment of sales tax in recent years.

The judgments are in addition to previous warrants filed by the Tax Department for nonpayment of sales tax from the early 1990s.

“We can confirm that new warrants against Don Peck Auction LLC were filed Aug. 6 with the St. Lawrence County Clerk by the NYS Tax Department,” spokesman Cary B. Ziter wrote in an email. “Said warrants are for sales tax due the state in the amount of $46,180 for filing periods in 2011 and 2012 and for $4,798 for 2008.”

The total includes penalties and interest.

Mr. Peck said he was unaware the state had filed the most recent of the judgments against him.

“I did pay sales tax,” he said. “I filed quarterly returns.”

Mr. Peck said he did not have his returns available to see if the amounts matched those the state says he owes.

Mr. Peck said he received no notice of the amounts that were due.

“Once they’ve got it out for you, they’ve got it out for you,” he said. “I just give up on them.”

Mr. Peck is the vice chairman of the Board of Legislators. He changed his party registration from Republican to Democrat earlier this year but the switch will not become official until after the general election.

Last summer, the state seized Mr. Peck’s bank accounts for nonpayment of sales tax from the early 1990s. At the time, Mr. Peck said interest and penalties inflated the amount owed to more than $500,000.

In June, Mr. Ziter said Mr. Peck, and his business, Peck’s Auction Barn, still owed the state $263,212.

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