A REPRESENTATIVE of Peter Nygard yesterday failed to respond to claims that the billionaire fashion designer owes the government more than $3 million in real property tax.
Despite earlier assurances that a statement would be forthcoming, Earlin Williams, who spoke on Mr Nygard’s behalf, finally said at about 10:30 last night that he was not authorised to speak on the matter.
According to well-placed government sources, the controversial Lyford Cay resident is in arrears to the amount of $3,026,851.64 as of July 17.
It is unclear if Mr Nygard has made a payment on his account since last Thursday; however, it has been suggested that the outstanding bill is due to a standoff with the Real Property Tax Office over zoning classification.
According to sources, Mr Nygard has taken issue with the classification of his property as commercial, which has a significantly higher tax rate.
Last night, Minister of State for Finance Michael Halkitis said that he was not privy to the status of individual accounts. He added that he would not comment on the status of a private individual.
Mr Halkitis told parliamentarians last month that the Government’s real property tax amnesty yielded $9.1 million in extra revenues during its first three months. While more than 1,000 taxpayers settled their outstanding bills, Mr Halkitis reported during the 2013/2014 Budget debate that some 471 property owners had registered with the Chief Valuation Officer for the first time.
Last night, Mr Williams said a statement on the Nygard tax would be issued sometime today.