August 13, 2014

Georgia Democrat “Partnered With Lobbyists” In Multi-Million Dollar Land Deal

Michelle Nunn Land Deal That memo from Michelle Nunn’s campaign continues to be a burden. The Atlanta Journal-Constitution reported ($) tonight that Michelle Nunn partnered with Washington, D.C. insider lobbyists in a multi-million dollar land deal near Brunswick, Georgia in 2004.

In 2004, Nunn, her father, four-term Democratic U.S. Sen. Sam Nunn, local builder Michael Wilson and two Washington lobbyists who used to work for Sam Nunn – Bob Hurt and Frank Norton – secured along with their spouses a $2 million loan to buy 850 acres of land in Glynn County. At the end of 2008, the county approved a zoning change for a chunk of the property to “planned development,” with the lead owner listed as Ron Martin, Nunn’s husband.

When their plans didn’t pan out, Nunn and her lobbyist business partners sought out special tax treatment for the property to reduce their tax burden.

When a development plan was still in the works, the tax bill on the land came to $23,100, on a market value of $2.55 million. After Wisawee Partners obtained the easement, the tax bill on the slightly smaller portion of land dedicated to the easement was $3,502 and its market value assessed at $369,210. The rest of the property was spun off into smaller parcels in separate holding companies. Subsequent easements reduced their values and tax bills as well. In addition, the partnership would have been eligible for state tax credits and a charitable deduction on its federal return for the amount of the lost property value, which was in effect donated to the Georgia Land Trust.

Interestingly, her campaign memo had listed her land deal as a vulnerability. Which makes sense considering Nunn has run on decrying lobbyists and their influence. Nunn just left out the part where she joined in a multi-million dollar business venture with those very D.C. lobbyists she claims to abhor. Nunn probably also doesn’t want you to know that she has taken over $120,000 from lobbyists this cycle. She’s already got the D.C. insider game down, it sure seems like she’s got the hypocrisy part too.