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City Council candidate Annissa Essaibi George says she’s paid up on taxes

City Council candidate Annissa Essaibi George canvassed in the Orient Heights section of East Boston this month.Josh Reynolds for The Boston Globe/File

City Council candidate Annissa Essaibi George has been late paying taxes on her home and business, according to a review of public records.

Essaibi George was nearly three months late paying $1,063 in property taxes on her Mayhew Street home. She also owed $2,661 in property taxes on her business, Stitch House Dorchester, records show. Essaibi George and her husband, Douglas George, paid off the debt Friday, the candidate said.

“When we saw that there was an oversight on our part, we went through and paid everything in full immediately, including the late fees,” Essaibi George said.

The payments had been due Aug. 3 and the city had begun charging interest, according to tax records. Douglas George was behind on property taxes on 20 other properties he owns in Boston and owed nearly $17,000.

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City records showed that Essaibi George’s husband paid more than $14,000 Friday but still owed $2,668. Essaibi George said her husband paid the remaining balance Monday. City officials said updated records would not be available until Tuesday.

The Globe requested Essaibi George’s tax records Thursday. The Boston Herald first reported Saturday that the couple’s payments were past due.

Essaibi George is the lone challenger trying to unseat one of four at-large incumbents who represent the entire city.

The council’s most significant responsibility is to scrutinize and adopt the city’s budget. The council also approves loan orders and other fiscal matters.

Property taxes provide roughly two-thirds of the City of Boston’s annual revenue. In her campaign, Essaibi George has proposed a moratorium on corporate tax breaks and urged large tax-exempt hospitals and universities to contribute more to pay for basic city services.

“It is incumbent on city councilors to protect taxpayers by urging institutions to carry a fair share of financial responsibility for the city,” Essaibi George wrote on her website.

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Her experience as a small business owner has been part of her pitch to voters.

Records show the state filed two liens against Essaibi George and her business when she was late paying nearly $14,000 in sales taxes. The debts were paid this summer, and she is up to date, according to public records and a state spokesman.

Essaibi George said the liens were the result of a clerical error. She said she had initially paid sales tax annually and the state switched her to a quarterly payment schedule.

“That created some misaccounting on both ends,” Essaibi George said. “I worked with the Department of Revenue for about 18 months to clarify and fix the process. We resolved it and I’m in good standing.”

She provided the Globe with tax statements showing the state had given her refunds for overpayments. The state Department of Revenue would not discuss the case because of taxpayer confidentiality.


Andrew Ryan can be reached at andrew.ryan@globe.com. Follow him on Twitter @globeandrewryan.