Shenandoah, February 22 – City of Shenandoah City Councilman Ted Fletcher, who is running for re-election on May 4, and his wife Maritza Ghiselle “Ritzy” Fletcher not only have a troubled financial past but also, in reality, they have a troubled financial present. Federal and state tax liens, at least one bankruptcy filing, and judgments are major aspects of their lives and may explain why they don’t have any account with the Montgomery Central Appraisal District or any records in the Real Property Records of the Montgomery County Clerk, showing ownership of any real estate in their names.
Ritzy Fletcher, known among the citizens of Shenandoah as the person who frequently disrupts City Council meetings and other public gatherings, claims to be the president of a fake political action committee, which Precinct 2 County Commissioner Charlie Riley and his social party planner established to defeat conservative candidates in local elections. On the website of that fake PAC, she describes herself and her husband: “Ritzy and Ted Fletcher reside in Shenandoah, where Ted serves on the City Council. They have 5 children, three of which are still in school, attending College Park High and Texas A&M University.”
That’s quite a bit short of the full story.
Current Federal Tax Lien ($31,302.70)
In truth, there is so much more to Ted Fletcher and Ritzy Fletcher. On May 6, 2017, Ted Fletcher beat John Houston in the race for Place 2, Shenandoah City Council, by 2 votes out of 636 cast. He may have owed a debt of gratitude to the voters, but the Fletchers owed many other debts.
Less than a year earlier, the United States Department of the Treasury, Internal Revenue Service, filed a $31,302.70 Federal Tax Lien in the Real Property Records of Montgomery County Clerk Mark Turnbull against Ted and Ritzy Fletcher for unpaid taxes in 2014 and 2009 on their personal tax returns. The Federal Tax Lien remains unpaid, according to the Real Property Records, because there is no release for it. A copy of the Notice of Federal Tax Lien appears immediately below.
That was hardly the first Federal Tax Lien or State Tax Lien, which the Fletchers suffered. They have lived lives of failing to pay their debts for decades.
2012 Bankruptcy filing
On March 5, 2012, Ted and Ritzy Fletcher filed a Chapter 13 bankruptcy in the United States Bankruptcy Court for the Southern District of Texas, Houston Division, under Case Number 12-31737, with the Honorable Bankruptcy Judge David Jones presiding over their case. The Fletchers listed more than fifty (50) creditors whom they owed close to a million dollars, including many credit card companies, finance companies, and department stores.
In a Chapter 13, the debtors were to propose a plan to pay their creditors over a five-year period. At first, the Fletchers proposed to pay their creditors only 1% of their debt. The Bankruptcy Judge refused to consider that proposed plan. Later the Fletchers amended their proposed plan with their idea only to pay their creditors 12% of their debt to them. The Bankruptcy Court never approved that plan either.
The Fletchers’ Bankruptcy Proceeding was ugly. A bank proceeded to ask the Bankruptcy Court for permission to foreclose on the Fletchers’ home for their failure to pay $28,548.00 in monthly payments on their mortgage. The Court allowed the foreclosure which occurred a few months later for the home the Fletchers had valued at $419,530.00.
The Fletchers failed to appear for a required meeting with creditors, which the Court and the creditors had to reschedule to force the Fletchers to appear. At one point, the Fletchers had begun to make some monthly payments to creditors, as they had promised the Bankruptcy Judge they would, but they soon failed to make the promised payments.
As a result of the Fletchers’ failure to comply with Bankruptcy Court orders and federal law, the Bankruptcy Judge dismissed their bankruptcy in 2013.
Other liens, judgments, proceedings against the Fletchers
The Fletchers seem to follow a pattern of building up substantial debts in one locality, suffering numerous Federal and State Tax Liens, as well as judgments, and then leaving that locale to look for greener pastures elsewhere. The Fletchers clearly have a pattern of failed businesses, hundreds of thousands of dollars of unpaid debts, extremely liberal use of credit cards to make lavish purchases, and then fleeing for the purpose of avoidance.
In 2010, the IRS filed a Federal Tax Lien against the Fletchers in Montgomery County in the amount of $2,229.06, but eventually released that lien under a repayment plan in 2013.
In 2002, the IRS filed a $143,367.00 Federal Tax Lien against the Fletchers in Howard County, Indiana. There is no indication the IRS ever released that tax lien or that the Fletchers ever paid any portion of it.
On September 27, 2002, the State of Indiana filed a State Tax Warrant against the Fletchers in the amount of $405. The Fletchers eventually paid that tax debt in 2005.
On October 27, 1997, the State of Indiana filed another State Tax Warrant against the Fletchers for $757, which they paid a year later.
In 1997, the IRS filed a Federal Tax Lien against the Fletchers for $7,975.00 and a separate one for $7,894.00. The IRS never released those liens.
In 1995, the State of California filed a State Tax Lien against the Fletchers for $6,364.00 in Santa Ana, California. There was never a release of that lien, but the Fletchers left California for Indiana.
California also filed State Tax Liens against the Fletchers in 1993 and 1994.
In 1996, a creditor of the Fletchers, Paul Toberty, in Indiana, received a Judgment against them in the amount of $16,234. The Fletchers apparently never paid the Judgment, because Toberty never released it.
It does appear, however, that Ted and Ritzy Fletcher filed a Chapter 7 Bankruptcy Liquidation proceeding in 1997 while they were living in the State of Indiana. While the Bankruptcy would not have eliminated their tax debts, they may have gotten rid of the judgment debt by filing bankruptcy instead and receiving a federal discharge.
Ted Fletcher didn’t return telephone calls seeking comment.
City Councilman Ted Fletcher and fake Republican Ritzy Fletcher remain under the scrutiny of the IRS.
Perhaps, the citizens of Shenandoah should scrutinize the Fletchers as well.