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VOL. 122 | NO. 116 | Friday, June 22, 2007

City Council Member's Land to Be Sold at Oct. Tax Sale

By Andy Meek

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Two parcels of vacant land owned by Memphis City Council member Jack Sammons are due to be sold at the Shelby County Trustee's Tax Sale Oct. 29, according to a public notice in today's Daily News.

The properties, both in the 38111 ZIP code near the University of Memphis, are included in a list of parcels owned by delinquent taxpayers "not to be found." The listing is part of the exhaustive effort county trustee Bob Patterson's office legally is required to make in order to adequately notify delinquent taxpayers they are behind on property taxes.

The process mainly involves Patterson's office sending each of those property owners a certified return receipt request card that must be signed. Those scheduled for the Oct. 29 sale who did not sign or return the card are included on the list starting on Page 33 of today's Daily News.

The reason Sammons' name is included - and the cause of his properties' delinquent taxes - is that he's apparently been trying to unload the real estate.

"We wrote the trustee five years ago," he said, "and told him, 'Look, we've got no interest in keeping the properties.' So rather than go through all the hoops, we're going to abandon them."

Those parcels also are listed as under the ownership of a limited partnership, Pappy's Enterprises LP. Tennessee Secretary of State documents show Sammons is the registered agent of the partnership.

"What I've been trying to do at City Hall is to actually create a land bank, because most people inherit these kinds of properties - that's how I got these," he said. "And there's not a process to really donate them, so what you have to do is let them come take it away from you. We've got vacant lots in the 'hood that we'll pay taxes on for 30 years."

Other property owners listed as not to be found include Charles Baker Airport in Millington, former University of Memphis basketball coach Larry Finch and his wife, Vickie, and local bluesman "Blind Mississippi" Morris Cummings.

RECORD TOTALS DAY WEEK YEAR
PROPERTY SALES 98 172 17,556
MORTGAGES 101 194 20,229
FORECLOSURE NOTICES 0 9 2,654
BUILDING PERMITS 223 349 36,295
BANKRUPTCIES 52 115 11,279
BUSINESS LICENSES 26 58 5,767
UTILITY CONNECTIONS 27 27 6,741
MARRIAGE LICENSES 17 68 3,984