Taxes: $4M Paid On $9.7M Earned

Ste­fanowski Re­leases Re­turns

Hartford Courant (Sunday) - - Front Page - By NEIL VIGDOR nvig­dor@courant.com

Af­ter months of stalling that opened him up to com­par­isons to Don­ald Trump, Repub­li­can Bob Ste­fanowski re­leased his fed­eral and state tax re­turn in­for­ma­tion for 2017 and 2016 on the sec­ond-to-last Satur­day of the gu­ber­na­to­rial cam­paign.

The for­mer cor­po­rate ex­ec­u­tive re­ported $9.7 mil­lion in in­come for 2017 on a joint fil­ing with his wife, Amy Ste­fanowski, with the cou­ple pay­ing $4 mil­lion in fed­eral and state in­come taxes.

Ste­fanowski paid the top rate of 6.99 per­cent in state in­come tax — for earn­ers over $500,000 — in both 2016 and 2017.

The re­lease of Ste­fanowski’s tax re­turns on his cam­paign web­site comes eight days

af­ter Demo­crat Ned La­mont let mem­bers of the me­dia in­spect the last five years of his tax re­turns at a New Haven law of­fice. Pho­to­graphs and pho­to­copies were not al­lowed, how­ever.

It’s been a month since Oz Griebel, a pe­ti­tion­ing can­di­date and for­mer MetroHart­ford Al­liance CEO, re­leased his tax re­turns for 2017, 2016 and 2015.

Ste­fanowski’s two main ri­vals had been crit­i­cal of him dur­ing the past sev­eral weeks, say­ing that he needed to be more trans­par­ent about his fi­nan­cial hold­ings and tax pay­ments, espe­cially since the thrust of his cam­paign is about phas­ing out the state in­come tax.

Both La­mont and Ste­fanowski re­ceived six-month ex­ten­sions from the April 17 tax fil­ing dead­line this year, an op­tion avail­able to all fil­ers.

Although La­mont’s wealth is es­ti­mated in the hun­dreds of mil­lions from his telecom­mu­ni­ca­tions busi­ness, in­her­i­tance and the in­come of his wife, An­nie La­mont, who started her own ven­ture cap­i­tal firm and files her taxes sep­a­rately, Ste­fanowski re­ported a higher 2017 in­come than La­mont.

La­mont’s to­tal was $5.3 mil­lion, com­pared with $9.7 mil­lion for Ste­fanowski, a for­mer top ex­ec­u­tive for UBS In­vest­ment Bank, Gen­eral Elec­tric and the con­tro­ver­sial pay­day lend­ing com­pany, Dol­lar Fi­nan­cial Group.

Griebel, a for­mer Repub­li­can who ran for gover­nor in 2010, re­ported $392,884 in 2017 in­come.

In 2016, Ste­fanowski got a re­fund of $137,015 on his fed­eral in­come taxes, while he owed an ad­di­tional $170,269 for 2017.

It’s un­clear from Ste­fanowski’s tax sum­maries how much money he gave to char­ity dur­ing the past two years.

La­mont’s cam­paign has es­ti­mated that he’s given $2 mil­lion to $3 mil­lion to char­ity dur­ing the past five years.

Try­ing to tie Ste­fanowski to Trump has been a key el­e­ment of La­mont’s strat­egy, in­clud­ing on the tax re­turn is­sue.

Trump is the first pres­i­dent in decades who has re­fused to re­lease his tax re­turns, which could be sub­ject of a sub­poena if Democrats win con­trol of the U.S. House in next month’s midterm elec­tions.

CLOE POIS­SON | CPOISSON@COURANT.COM

REPUB­LI­CAN gu­ber­na­to­rial can­di­date Bob Ste­fanowski was the high­est earner in 2017 among the ma­jor-party candidates.

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