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Lawsuit filed over alleged use of tax information

Anderson County Delinquent tax Attorney and Deputy Trustee Doyle “Trippy” Teno has filed a federal lawsuit against Trustee Myron Iwanski, County Commissioner Steve Mead and his wife Leslie, and County Commissioner and current mayoral candidate Steve Emert.

The lawsuit, filed Monday in US District Court in Knoxville, accuses Iwanski–who is, as the suit notes, also the chairman of the Anderson County Finance Committee and Emert’s campaign treasurer–of obtaining copies of his tax return information from both the Finance Office and the Clerk & Master’s office sometime before April 5th.  The lawsuit states that employees in both offices confirmed Iwanski was the only person who had requested or received that information.

The lawsuit states that on April 5th, during a campaign event in Oak Ridge, the Meads were at a table with campaign materials, among which was an “11-page document with fifty-three paragraphs.” The suit states that the document, entitled “Things You Need to Know about Terry Frank,” did not identify who was responsible for its content, in violation of state law.

The complaint alleges that the document explicitly references Teno’s “confidential Tax Return Information, his IRS Form W-2 and IRS Form 1099,” in violation of a federal law that requires individuals with access to individuals’ tax information to keep it confidential.

The lawsuit alleges that the Meads claimed ownership of the document during the campaign event in question and further alleges that the Emert campaign has continued to distribute the document to potential voters.

The lawsuit seeks damages in the amount of $1000 for “each act of unauthorized inspection or disclosure of a return or return information” the defendants are found liable for, punitive damages and attorney’s fees.

About Jim Harris

Jim Harris has been WYSH's News & Sports Director since 2000. In addition to reporting local news, he is the play-by-play voice for Clinton High School football, boys' and girls' basketball and baseball. Catch Jim live weekdays beginning at 6:20 am for live local news, sports, weather and traffic plus the Community Bulletin Board, shenanigans with Ron Meredith and more on the Country Club Morning Show on WYSH & WQLA. Jim lives in Clinton with his wife Kelly and daughter Carolina, his mother-in-law and cats Lucius and Oliver.

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6 comments

  1. concerned citizen

    Just when you think it can get no worse! I suppose the mayor is to blame for this, also. I wonder when these county officials will approach commission for funds to pay their attorney fees. I realize these are only allegations,
    but these men should resign their county positions.

    • interested listener

      They are the most rotten bunch I have ever seen.They break all the rules and then Iwanski and Meade subvert the Mayor at every turn. I said i thought Emert was a post turtle,and apparently that’s what he is.

  2. WOW JUST WOW!

  3. I just had an epiphany: The defendants will defend the suit by claiming “Jay told us it was okay.”

  4. And the case was dismissed so obviously Trippy must be tripping. Way to waste more taxpayer money and overcharging the county for title searches. Is that why you were so upset about people finding out how much you were gouging the county for.

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