Rarity's Ross still in the hole on taxes

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By Damon Lawrence

Despite a big payment that came in last month, Oak Ridge Land Co. LLC still owes Roane County money.
Developer Mike Ross is the registered agent for the company, which failed to pay 2008 property taxes on hundreds of parcels in his Rarity Ridge and Rarity Oaks developments.
Clerk and Master Shannon Conley said the county received payment last month of approximately $311,000.
Conley said the check came from Regions Bank, and it still didn’t cover all of what Oak Ridge Land Co. owes in 2008 unpaid property taxes, penalties and other fees.
Another one of Ross’ entities, Oak Ridge Land Co. Partnership, failed to pay 2009 property taxes on hundreds of parcels.
Those taxes are way past due and accruing penalties each month.
Ross’ troubles are well documented. One of his former business partners accused him in a federal lawsuit of civil violations of the Racketeer Influenced and Corrupt Organizations Act.
The lawsuit alleged that Ross’ Rarity real-estate ventures was nothing but a pyramid scheme used to dupe investors.
Oak Ridge Country Club has also accused Ross of stiffing them, and is suing him in Roane County Chancery Court to collect.
According to the complaint, Oak Ridge Land Co. made a commitment to pay the country club for reserving memberships.
“The defendant agreed in part to pay Oak Ridge Country Club $50 per month for each reserved/unused golf membership available to Oak Ridge Land Co.,” the complaint states.
“Under the terms of the sales contract, Oak Ridge Land Co. is currently obligated to pay Oak Ridge Country Club for 175 reserved/unused golf memberships at $50 each for a total monthly fee of $8,750.37.”
The country club said it’s suffered a loss of at least $180,649.53.
The country club wants payment in that amount and other unpaid fees that accrue over the course of the legal action.