It seemed like business as usual at Keim Bakery during the noon lunch rush Wednesday. Customers continued to file into the downtown business, perusing the sweet offerings in the bakery’s glass case.
But hungry diners weren’t the only visitors at Keim Wednesday. Two agents from the Kansas Department of Revenue’s civil tax and enforcement bureau and a law enforcement agent from the state’s Alcoholic Beverage Control agency executed a delinquent sales tax warrant on the business at 304 S. Main St., Ottawa.
“There is a tax warrant that was issued — that I can confirm,” Mary Jones, warrant execution manager for the revenue department, said Wednesday afternoon.
The department did not release other details about the case, but Jones said the department had no plans to close the business and the bakery could continue operating. The state agency is working with the business to bring the owners up-to-date on the sales taxes owed, Jones said, adding it was a routine process for the department.
“They can continue to operate, and we’re hoping in the future that we can work with them to come up with some kind of solution to make sure we don’t have to close them,” Jones said.
The bakery is expected to pay the delinquent taxes, although the revenue department did not disclose the amount owed.
Jones could not confirm if agents seized cash on the premises to begin paying off the debt. Wednesday’s step of the process was complete, Jones said, but the agency planned to follow up with the business owner to make payment arrangements.
The bakery’s owner, Tony Keim, said nothing has changed about the business, and the bakery would continue serving patrons.
“Yes, I think we’ve got that rectified.” Keim, who has operated the bakery for 1 1/2 years with his wife and son, said.
The problem, Keim said, stemmed from not filing a sales tax return to the state on time. Sales tax returns are supposed to be filed quarterly with the state, but Keim said he did not get it done on time.
Kansas imposes a 6.3-percent state retailers’ sales tax, while Franklin County has a 1.5-percent sales tax and the City of Ottawa imposes a 1.1-percent sales tax — making the total sales tax rate 8.9 percent.