Dalton admits operating businesses without paying fees

Councilman will not be charged retroactively by city

COVINGTON — Covington City Councilman Keith Dalton admitted he has been operating two businesses without the proper licensing for years, but said he has now rectified that.

“It was an omission on my part. I’m sorry if I’ve let anybody down,” he said.

Records in the Planning and Zoning department show Dalton has now paid the proper fees for both his businesses.

Dalton owns Covington Window Cleaners Inc., a janitorial service, and Hat Creek Properties LLC, a property management company. He has not paid the home occupational tax for either until recently. Covington Window Cleaners was formed in 1986 and Hat Creek Properties, which he owns with Craig Treadwell, was formed in 2007.

Records on file with Planning and Zoning show Dalton paid the $100 home occupation tax for Hat Creek Properties on June 28. The $50 fee for Covington Window Cleaners was paid July 15, according to records.

Dalton said he has maintained registration with the Secretary of State’s Office and paid for general liability and worker’s compensation insurance, which cost more than the home occupation tax.

Dalton said because the businesses are service-oriented, with work done on the job sites, and he only handles some related finance matters from his home on Flat Rock Trail, he did not think he needed a license.

“It was just an omission on my part. I’m sure I’m not the only one but I can only worry about myself and fix the guy in the mirror,” he said.

Senior Planner Scott Gaither said there have been no complaints filed with the Planning and Zoning Office about Dalton’s businesses.

Dalton will not be charged retroactively, Gaither said.

“Our goal is for compliance and not to penalize,” Gaither said, adding that such fees are for revenue and not regulatory purposes. The city does not technically have business licenses but occupational and home occupational taxes solely for the purpose of collecting revenue and not regulating business operations, according to City Attorney Ed Crudup.

Dalton said that he has received a lot of support from the community since it was first reported that he did not have proper licensing.

“It is overwhelming and has been way more of a positive than it has a negative,” he said.


TheUpside 2 years, 4 months ago

WOW this is so much more professionally written than the other paper in town. That paper tries to smear people but Mrs. Tatum is so professional no wonder I love this paper.


Covingtonian 2 years, 4 months ago

"Dalton admits operating businesses without paying fees" Just what was he suppose to do, deny it?


deathtotaxes 2 years, 4 months ago

My question is who's gaurding the hen house? The city is not monitoring buisnesses or maybe they are looking the other way? Why was he not charged/fined for the years he operated without a license. Is that lost just lost revenue for the city?


Billy 2 years, 4 months ago

I spent a large amount of money to have CPAs and Lawyers make sure my new business was lawful and complied with all known license requirements before I ever publicly conducted any business activity whatsoever. I don't know the details of the above councilman's situation, but my thing is to obey the law and be seen by any potential critic as doing so. I'm having my corp documents reviewed and rewritten by an attorney in Conyers even as we speak. Rich people always get extra breaks apart from us "normal" folk. I make sure I'm doing the right thing; the above expenses came out of my pocket, not business proceeds, and for the record, I'm not wealthy and have no outside investors. It was financially painful to do so, but I did it without a second thought. Granted, the gov't is not helpful for startups, and more of a hindrance than a help for established businesses, but businessmen, let's go out of our way to do the basic things: obtain licenses and pay our taxes. That's the absolute least we can do. Any elected official should set a mile high standard in business practices; anything less questions their motives and integrity, and in this day and age of worthless gov't, no elected person should be doing less than what the governments they themselves administer require and demand from the rest of us...


John 2 years, 4 months ago

Does this mean I really didn't need to start paying my propertry taxes (a very nice source of revenue) because I didn't realize I had to? Glad I did 'cause there are some REAL PENALTIES and someone else would be living in our home. Mom used to say "What is good for the goose is good for the gander". That might just apply here and a person of real character might just pony up and make their oversites right. But Mom used to say "A mite is a very, very small bug." Mom did get smarter the old I got.


Frustrated 2 years, 4 months ago

An "omission" for several years on TWO businesses and he is part of city government? How many other things has he "ommited"?


dennistay53 2 years, 4 months ago

All business fees for all business in Covington and Newton County should be returned to the ones who followed the ordinance and paid up, if he isn't made to go back and pay up for all years.


will 2 years, 4 months ago

Total lack of integrity. This character should lose his seat because he has a track record of trying to skirt the system. He has lost all credibility, a business owner than does not pay for proper licensing is a cheater.


dennistay53 2 years, 4 months ago

If the other council members don't in the least censor him they aren't doing their jobs.


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