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Tuesday, November 30, 2010

Tax Delinquent List Posted -- 'Target' Owes What?

Posted By on Tue, Nov 30, 2010 at 11:59 AM

click to enlarge uncle_sam_taxes.jpg

The state of California has, once again, updated its list of California's biggest sales tax delinquents -- and the No. 1 target is, well, Target.

But not the Target you're thinking of. The big-box retailer with the checkered record regarding gay rights that has San Franciscans enraged has, ostensibly, paid up its sales taxes. A company called California Target Enterprises, Inc.,  however, owes the state's Board of Equalization $18.1 million.

The state may have trouble getting its money back. The headquarters of the Target in question is an office park in Downey, Calif. A call to dentist Dr. Anthony Bordas -- who owns the building -- reveals that he shares the three-tenant office park with a tax company in Suite A; and a storefront church in Suite B. And a call to Target Enterprise's listed number puts one on the line with a polite older woman who insists she's had that number for years -- and doesn't owe the state $18.1 million.

The No. 2 delinquent on the Board of Equalization's list is an Oakland importer called C & JD USA, Inc. That company owes $15.8 million; SF Weekly was unable to get in contact with it.

Top San Francisco delinquents are Ramirez Developers ($3.2 million); and Boudames Business Machines, Inc ($2 million).

In addition to sales taxes, "use taxes" are also included in calculating how much debtors owe. While readers are likely familiar with what sales taxes are, those who have, say, sold a car may know about "use taxes," which are, essentially, the taxes due in a situation in which there are no sales taxes. If you sell a vehicle to your neighbor or buy goods from a state with no sales tax, you owe the Board of Equalization use taxes. It's safe to say that the vast, vast majority of the money in question on the delinquent list is accounted for via sales taxes.

Since AB 1418 became law of the land in 2007, the state has been required to post the list of its top sales and use tax scofflaws. Questions about how these companies racked up such massive debts or even what manner of business they're in were deflected by Board of Equalization spokeswoman Anita Gore.

"We are bound by strict taxpayer confidentiality laws," she said. "The only reason we can give you this information in the first place is that law went into effect in 2007."

Fair enough. Perhaps the nice lady with California Target Enterprise's phone number might appreciate a call, however, to explain why she's getting calls regarding that $18.1 million.

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About The Author

Joe Eskenazi

Joe Eskenazi

Joe Eskenazi was born in San Francisco, raised in the Bay Area, and attended U.C. Berkeley. He never left. "Your humble narrator" was a staff writer and columnist for SF Weekly from 2007 to 2015. He resides in the Excelsior with his wife, 4.3 miles from his birthplace and 5,474 from hers.


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