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Mayor's Nonprofit Owes IRS $27K

Community development corporation founded by Jones is in arrears on employee taxes.



A nonprofit founded by Mayor Dwight C. Jones owes the federal government $27,566.70 in unpaid taxes. On March 27, the Internal Revenue Service placed a lien against property owned by the Imani Intergenerational Community Development Corp., which Jones founded and until recently served as board president.


As pastor of First Baptist Church South Richmond, Jones founded the nonprofit in 1989 to develop affordable housing for low-income residents in the Manchester area. During his campaign for mayor, Jones frequently cited the group's success luring new commercial and residential development into the blighted Hull Street corridor.


Imani's main holding is a medical building on Hull Street housing Dr. Lerla Joseph's family medical practice. A related entity, Imani Neighborhood Revitalization Partners LLC -- which owns an apartment building on 14th and Hull streets financed with federal low-income housing tax credits -- will not be affected.


The unpaid money is for employee withholding taxes, according to the IRS lien. The federal government collects payments -- those pesky federal deductions chopped from each paycheck -- every three months from employers to fund Social Security and Medicare. According to the lien, the development corporation has missed eight payments beginning in 2004 and ending in the second quarter of 2007.


According to the Internal Revenue code, in some cases officers and directors may be personally liable for the unpaid taxes.


Tammy Hawley, a City Hall spokeswoman, says Jones wasn't aware of the IRS lien or the unpaid taxes. “He doesn't have any information on the matter,” she says.


Jones stepped down as president of Imani on Dec. 31, the day before he took office as mayor. Hawley says group's new president is Ray Patterson, who works as manager of community affairs for the Metropolitan Richmond Sports Backers. He did not return a call from Style by press time.

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