Tax man comes for C Street residence
Updated 6:06 p.m.
By Al Kamen
The famous rowhouse on C St. S.E., where disgraced South Carolina Gov. Mark Sanford sought counseling after his affair -- as did Sen. John Ensign (R-Nev.) after his affair -- has begun paying D.C. real estate taxes, according to city officials.
At least four congressmen live there, renting upstairs rooms from a group affiliated with "the Fellowship," a secretive group that organizes the National Prayer Breakfast. Ensign, who recently moved out of the tidy brick home, lived there and Sanford, when he was a member of Congress, came by for what he called "a Christian Bible study."
The downstairs part of the house, valued $1.8 million, is used for meals and prayer meetings, while the upstairs houses residents that included over the summer three House members, as well as Ensign and Sen. Tom Coburn (R-Okla.) (see our colleague Manuel Roig-Franzia's June report on the house).
It was there that Coburn, an obstetrician and gynecologist, met with Ensign's friend and former top aide, Doug Hampton, the husband of Ensign's mistress, for an emotional chat about forgiveness. Coburn reportedly advised Ensign to stop the affair but has said he would never reveal the details of those discussions, citing his religious privilege as an "ordained deacon" and his doctor's privilege.
Last summer, the tax records show, the house paid no taxes because it received an E1 or religious exemption. It was coded: "89 -Special Purpose-Misc" and it was classified for tax purposes as a commercial property.
But the property now is classified "TX - Taxable" and is listed as a residential property. The owner, according to tax records, remains "Youth With A Mission Washington DC Inc C St. Center." But that group says the property was transferred 20 years ago to C Street Center, Inc. after YWAM concluded its activities in the city.
The current property records also show that there was a tax payment of $1,714.70 on the property on Oct. 21. The records page notes that "Only payments received on or after Jan. 14, 2005 are displayed on this page."
It appears that, sometime after The Washington Post's article on the house, the city took a look at the situation. "The property in question was inspected by our office," a city official told our colleague Nikita Stewart, "and it was determined that portions are being rented to private individuals for residential purposes. As a result, the exemption was partially revoked and adjusted so that only 34 percent is now tax exempt and 66 percent has become taxable."
The property "went 66 percent taxable Aug.1," the official said, and the full taxable bill for 2010 will be $10, 234. Now, maybe if the lawmakers would stop paying rent, then the property would be fully tax-exempt. Of course, then the members would be questioned about accepting free accommodations.
Web Politics Editor
November 17, 2009; 4:43 PM ET
Categories: 44 The Obama Presidency , Washington Life
Save & Share: Previous: Midday Quiz: Terror Trials
Next: N.Y. police car crashes ahead of Biden
Posted by: vtreacy | November 21, 2009 10:13 AM | Report abuse
Posted by: pjcafe | November 20, 2009 11:42 AM | Report abuse
Posted by: vtreacy | November 18, 2009 7:45 PM | Report abuse
Posted by: pjcafe | November 18, 2009 5:54 PM | Report abuse
Posted by: vtreacy | November 18, 2009 4:08 PM | Report abuse
Posted by: pjcafe | November 18, 2009 11:45 AM | Report abuse
Posted by: vtreacy | November 18, 2009 7:56 AM | Report abuse
Posted by: Judy-in-TX | November 18, 2009 1:33 AM | Report abuse
Posted by: cprferry | November 17, 2009 10:19 PM | Report abuse
Posted by: cprferry | November 17, 2009 10:16 PM | Report abuse
Posted by: postreader118 | November 17, 2009 10:09 PM | Report abuse
Posted by: SofaKingCool2009 | November 17, 2009 9:57 PM | Report abuse
Posted by: axolotl | November 17, 2009 7:55 PM | Report abuse
Posted by: vtreacy | November 17, 2009 5:49 PM | Report abuse
Posted by: vtreacy | November 17, 2009 5:43 PM | Report abuse
Posted by: kenk3 | November 17, 2009 5:24 PM | Report abuse
The comments to this entry are closed.