New London candidates address back taxes owed

New London - On Tuesday, five of the 25 candidates running for City Council and Board of Education together owed just over $1,800 in delinquent motor vehicle taxes.

By Wednesday, morning three of the candidates, all Republicans, had paid $1,260 and settled their outstanding bills.

"It's news to me. I have the receipt showing the taxes are paid," Katelin Teel, a candidate for City Council, said Tuesday.

But later in the day, she said it turned out she did owe taxes on a Mazda 3 she sold to her sister-in-law in 2011. A license plate on the car had been stolen, she said, and there was confusion when her relative went to register the car. Eventually Teel turned over her registration to the Department of Motor Vehicles, which was supposed to notify the town that she no longer owned the vehicle.

"I totally missed it. It was from 2011-12 and for some reason I never thought about it," she said, laughing as she added that she was pregnant at the time.

She paid the $338 overdue bill Wednesday, though if she had produced a copy of the sales receipt, she said, she would have owed only half that amount.

"I just paid it," she said "The city needs the money."

Michael F. Doyle, who is running for council, did not believe he owed $816 in delinquent motor vehicle taxes. And it turns out he didn't. He owed $361.

"I didn't know about it," he said after paying off the bill in full. "I really did think I was paid up."

Jasan Catala, an incumbent member of the school board, also paid his outstanding bill on Tuesday when it was brought to his attention that he owed $562.

"They're paid now. It was error on my part, and I paid them today," he said. He also owed less than initially thought. His bill was $502.

Casey Giesing, a Republican candidate for school board, owes $527 in car taxes, and Democrat Elizabeth Garcia-Gonzalez, who is seeking re-election to the school board, owes $30 in delinquent car taxes, according the city tax collector.

Neither could be reached for comment.

k.edgecomb@theday.com

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