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Council Pres. Mosby Denies Previously Acknowledged Tax Lien

Nick. J. Mosby is the President of the Baltimore City Council
Office of the City Council President
Council President Nick. J. Mosby. On Thursday, the Democrat discussed the federal investigation into his and his wife's finances on WYPR's Midday program.

Baltimore City Council President Nick Mosby denied that the IRS placed a lien on his property on WYPR’s Midday program Thursday afternoon, despite documents that say otherwise and his previous acknowledgement of the lien.

In October, the Baltimore Sun reported that the IRS filed a $45,000 tax lien against Mosby, who told the newspaper that he had worked out a payment plan with the agency.

“Mosby said he had been in conversations with the IRS for five years and expected ‘to have the issue resolved in the coming days,’” theSun’s Justin Fenton reported. “He said it related to an early withdrawal from his retirement savings plan, which he said he did to ‘support unplanned expenses after a series of family tragedies.’ ”

On Midday, Mosby denied that the IRS ever placed a lien on his property.

“No, there's no lien on any property,” he said to host Tom Hall. “However, as I told you that, you know, I did owe taxes like millions of Americans.”

Hall later read a copy of the lien, which Fenton shared on Twitter and is available on public court records databases. It lists the Reservoir Hill address the couple reside at.

“We have made a demand for payment of this liability, but it remains unread,” the IRS document reads. “Therefore, there is a lien in favor of the United States on all property and rights to property belonging to this taxpayer for the amount of these taxes, and additional penalties, interest and costs that may accrue.”

Mosby said he had never seen the document before.

He also discussed the federal inquiry into the finances of himself and his wife, State’s Attorney Marilyn Mosby, telling Hall that they have done nothing wrong. He categorized the investigation as an unfair persecution.

“When you're an agent for change, you know, people who like the status quo to kind of remain the same, they’re incentivized to try to stop you,” the Democrat told host Tom Hall. “Since my wife boldly tried to prosecute officers for the death of Freddie Carlos Gray, we've been through a lot, particularly behind the scenes.”

A federal grand jury subpoenaed the Democratic political power couple for a host of financial records, including tax returns, bank statements and canceled checks. The investigation, led by the FBI and U.S. Attorney’s office, was first reported by theSun last month.

Many local media outlets have reported “misinformation that could maybe be construed as ill-intended that was put out about my wife and travel and pocketing money,” he said, referring to a February report from the City Office of the Inspector General that detailed the travel of the State’s Attorney, a frequent panelist at criminal justice conferences.

The OIG report concluded that Mosby broke city policies for her out-of-town travel, as she did not seek prior approval for the trips; those that last five workdays or longer must be approved by the city spending board, even if conferences fund them.

The report did not find the State’s Attorney misspent taxpayer dollars. “I'm a student of history,” Council President Mosby said. “I know that I am not, she is not, the first person to have to go through things like this.”

“I know one thing. The citizens of Baltimore know exactly who we are,” Mosby said. “We can't allow it to distract away from the work.”

Listen to the entire interview here.

Emily Sullivan is a city hall reporter at WYPR, where she covers all things Baltimore politics. She joined WYPR after reporting for NPR’s national airwaves. There, she was a reporter for NPR’s news desk, business desk and presidential conflicts of interest team. Sullivan won a national Edward R. Murrow Award for an investigation into a Trump golf course's finances alongside members of the Embedded team. She has also won awards from the Chesapeake Associated Press Broadcasters Association for her use of sound and feature stories. She has provided news analysis on 1A, The Takeaway, Here & Now and All Things Considered.
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