12th District candidate's financial problems ongoing

Friday, Feb. 28, 2014 5:32 PM
Last updated Saturday, March 1, 2014 5:40 PM
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ATLANTA -- Congressional hopeful Delvis Dutton brings to the campaign trail a history of financial problems that is likely to become fodder for his opponents.

Rep. Dutton  FILE
FILE
Rep. Dutton

Dutton announced he will qualify next week for the Republican primary in the 12th congressional district currently represented by Democrat John Barrow.

Dutton will face at least three other announced candidates, including former congressional aide John Stone and Augusta businessmen Rick Allen and Eugene Yu. Stone and Allen have each run before in that district and have nearly a year-long head start on Dutton campaigning. Yu just announced last weekend that he is switching from the U.S. Senate race.

Both Allen and Yu have made sizable personal contributions to their campaigns, something Dutton appears to be unable to do to help his campaign catch up in the fundraising contest.

Dutton, the owner of General Pump and Well in Glennville and also a Republican legislator, has been the subject of at least 29 judgments against him and his company for a variety of creditors. The judgments include unpaid sales, property and withholding taxes, repeated instances of unpaid unemployment-insurance premiums for his workers and claims from banks and suppliers.

“At the age of 22, I decided to start my own well-drilling business,” he said Friday. “During the past 14 years my business -- like many small businesses -- has enjoyed success as well as financially challenging times. In spite of any difficulties the business faced, I have never walked away from a debt.”

Court records in Dutton’s home county of Tattnall show the trail of financial problems stretches from a 2003 judgment against his company from Noland Co. for $15,600 that was satisfied two years later to as recently as December, 2012 to Yellowbook Inc. for $14,700. The largest, issued Aug. 2012, is for $627,000 and remains outstanding for a debt Dutton’s company owes Heritage Bank. The state also took steps to dissolve his business twice but later granted requests to renew its incorporation.

The nature of the debts are likely to create a campaign headache as big as the financial one, partly because they started well before the Great Recession and partly because they include taxes and employee benefits, notes Charles Bullock, a political science professor at the University of Georgia who has written extensively about Peach State politics.

“People find that particularly objectionable. We all get these tax bills, and we all have to pay them,” Bullock said.

Certainly voters have had their own financial challenges in recent years, he said. But that won’t stop Dutton’s finances from becoming a campaign issue.

“It will enter the public discourse,” Bullock said. “His ability to handle his own money will come up in terms of his ability to handle the public money.”

Dutton, though, said his trials as a business owner prepare him for being a good congressman.

“Real world experiences like this are one of the reasons that I’m running for Congress. Too many of the career politicians in Washington don’t know what it’s like to try to meet a payroll and can’t relate to the difficult economic situation that many Georgia families and businesses have found themselves in over the last few years,” he said.

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Butterman
3422
Points
Butterman 02/28/14 - 07:23 pm
2
2
Delvis

I was going to give Delvis a look but now I do not like what I see. It appears Yu is the best out of the bunch.

mdl1946
991
Points
mdl1946 02/28/14 - 10:41 pm
0
4
Walter C Jones , does not know how to wright a headline!!!!!

Walter C Jones , does not know how to wright a headline!!!!!

Butterman
3422
Points
Butterman 03/01/14 - 01:02 am
1
1
Reporters rarely write their

Reporters rarely write their own headlines.

geecheeriverman
1644
Points
geecheeriverman 03/01/14 - 06:20 am
6
2
Place to be

Getting elected to Congress would certainly be a way to get out of debt for him. Most former and current members of Congress sure got rich off the taxpayers. Most of our elected officials in Washington have sure profited after being elected!

Junket103
435
Points
Junket103 03/01/14 - 08:08 am
8
2
Character Counts

I have no problem with business owners with debt, it's how the system works. However, the ability to properly manage the debt says a lot about the owner's character. Requiring others to take you to court for you to pay up is problematic. Even more so when these individuals go out of their way to be in the public eye by running for or holding elective office. If you lack the skills to keep up with your business, maybe you should spend more time on the business and less in politics, until the debts are paid.

glfr8
120
Points
glfr8 03/01/14 - 08:29 am
5
1
Most of the people I know

Most of the people I know that were supporting Yu for Senate, in this area, will not be supporting him for congress. I would be mad if I wrote him a check for senate and he ended up running against someone I supported for the house! Why would you spend months campaigning and raising money to run for senate and then change to the house? That shows me he can't finish what he started. If you look at the FEC reports, Yu gave $2,600 to Allen in June of 2013 - while he was running for Senate. I don't know what Eugene's end game is here, but it surely can't be capitol hill. If I were Delvis, I would not qualify next week(its like $5000 fee) and take care of my struggling business and my family. Running for Congress and running a business - day to day - does not work well. Especially if he has all of this trouble he needs to take care of! It sounds to me like he is looking for a steady paycheck... I just think we have enough financial problems as it is, and Dutton doesn't have the best track record to this point in time to make them for the country...

soapy_725
43555
Points
soapy_725 03/01/14 - 10:30 am
0
0
There is that old time "sheet eating grin". Gotta love politicos
Unpublished

There is that old time "sheet eating grin". Gotta love politicos

soapy_725
43555
Points
soapy_725 03/01/14 - 10:31 am
0
0
Pappy always wondered at those who spent $250K for a $12k job
Unpublished

Pappy always wondered at those who spent $250K for a $12k job

soapy_725
43555
Points
soapy_725 03/01/14 - 10:32 am
0
0
New job paths: career politician or mega church pastor. Hmmmmm
Unpublished

New job paths: career politician or mega church pastor. Hmmmmm

Little Lamb
43847
Points
Little Lamb 03/01/14 - 05:42 pm
2
0
Well

It would be interesting if Delvis Dutton were to be elected to the U.S. House of Representatives. He would likely be the first well driller ever elected to Congress.

SouthernPatriot
7
Points
SouthernPatriot 03/02/14 - 11:59 pm
1
0
Delvis Dutton

Just wanted everyone to know that I have known Delvis his entire life and he is a "straight-up" guy, a principled conservative State Legislator, and a wonderful person. I'm not making excuses for his financial troubles, but his business has faced some very unfortunate circumstances. In spite of those difficulties, he has refused to take the easy way out, and he continues to work to meet all of his obligations. I just ask that you would investigate him closely, check into his voting record in the Georgia General Assembly, and give him a shot. I'm confident that you will be encouraged by what you find. Thanks!
P.S. Love the comment by Little Lamb!

Otis896
2
Points
Otis896 03/15/14 - 09:21 pm
0
1
Delvis Dutton

I also know Delvis Dutton. Anyone who has conversed with him more than 5 minutes would know that he does not have the brains it takes to run a business (as evidenced by his lack of success) much less be on a seat in the U.S. Congress.

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