Hamilton County Schools counters City of Chattanooga offer over unpaid liquor taxes

Hamilton County Schools counters City of Chattanooga offer over unpaid liquor taxes

April 14th, 2014 by Kevin Hardy in Local - Breaking News

Hamilton County Superintendent Rick Smith is seen in this file photo.

Photo by Jake Daniels/Times Free Press.

After filing a lawsuit on Friday, Hamilton County School officials have countered a city offer to make reparations for years of unpaid liquor taxes.

It's the latest move in a months-long battle between the county school system and the City of Chattanooga over millions in unpaid liquor-by-the-drink taxes. Monday's counter offer includes a five-year repayment plan for the $11.7 million - an idea also included in an earlier proposal from Mayor Andy Berke - that school officials say is due from unpaid taxes between 1998 and 2014.

The proposal from Superintendent Rick Smith also asks for transfer of the former Poss Homes public housing site and the North River YMCA swimming pool from the city to the school system.

City officials balked at the counter offer, because it ups the amount owed by the city by another $3.5 million. Berke's chief of staff said, "It's time to let the lawyers handle it."

Read more in tomorrow's Times Free Press.