April 29, 2017

Elderly Couple Evicted, Thrown Out on the Street, for Failing to Pay Property Taxes on Their Home



By Claire Bernish

http://thefreethoughtproject.com/property-taxes-elderly-couple-evicted/

Albion, ME — Maine Governor Paul LePage wants to rewrite the law after becoming incensed at the plight of an elderly, disabled couple — one of whom is a veteran — who were evicted from their home of 33 years because they are too impoverished to pay tax
es.

According to the Portland Press Herald, in December 2015, the town of Albion moved to foreclose on the “rundown camp” of National Guard and Marine veteran Richard Sukeforth and his wife, Leonette, when taxes went unpaid.

Then, the town put the couple’s home up for auction — it sold for just $6,500 — and the new owner, Jason Marks, kicked the two 80-year-olds to the curb last week.

LePage is irate — and wants to ensure this can never happen again.

“He’s living in poverty,” he said of Richard in an interview with the Morning Sentinel. “Now, we’re throwing him out on the street. That’s just awful.”

“I’m livid about it,” LePage asserted of the ‘legal’ but seemingly unscrupulous eviction, “and I think we have to have laws to protect our most vulnerable.”

LePage appealed to nonprofit Pine Tree Legal — an advocacy group providing free legal advice for Maine residents with limited income — but, it turns out, the eviction followed the letter of the law.

As the Sentinel reports,

“LePage said he thinks it is immoral that a veteran and his sick, bedridden wife, who are at the end of their lives, were kicked out of their home and he is going to fight to ensure the practice is prohibited in the future.”

As he explained in the interview,

“I’m going to ask for an ombudsman to mediate disputes between communities and taxpayers, not just elderly. I want to change the foreclosure law as it relates to poverty, and one of the things I want to do is force them (communities) to sell property at market value and any revenues above taxes and revenue and foreclosure fees go back to the original owner.”

Typically, Maine communities work with disadvantaged citizens to solve tax difficulties — through tax abatement and reverse mortgages, for example — in order to avoid evictions like the Sukeforths experienced.

Read More...

http://www.centralmaine.com/2017/02/07/elderly-man-evicted-from-albion-home-becomes-governors-guest-at-state-of-the-state/

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What a despicable mess and absolute insult to freedom and our Veterans.  All persons responsible for this should be ashamed.  Please share the links and this story to put pressure on terrible actions like these.

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