Money issues

Auditor candidate plagued by IRS, credit card debt

WARREN — Republican candidate Carlo A. Ciccone, 56, said he likely will be dropping out of the race for Warren city auditor after learning a collection agency filed a complaint against him in Trumbull County Court in July.

The collection agency, Cavalry SPC I, alleges that Ciccone, an attorney and a Certified Public Accountant, owes Synchrony Bank / BP $32,298.95. The debt has an annual interest rate of 3 percent.

When contacted by the Tribune Chronicle about the debt, Ciccone, 174 N. Park Ave., Apt. 37, said he was unaware a complaint had been filed in court. However, Ciccone did acknowledge that he used a personal credit card several years ago when his law practice was experiencing some difficulties. Ciccone said he thought issues surrounding the credit card debt had been addressed.

“Obviously, they had not been,” he said.

Ciccone said Trumbull County Court records show he was not served with the documents.

“Now that I know, I’m going to take care of it,” Ciccone said.

He also acknowleged an Internal Revenue Service tax debt of about $1,700.

“I took money from a 401(k) account in 2015 and the IRS debt is the taxes owed on the withdrawal amount,” Ciccone said. “I had been contacted by the IRS about this debt.”

Ciccone, who is recently divorced, said the tax debt was supposed to be split between his ex-wife and himself.

Although Ciccone has not filed documents with the Trumbull County Board of Elections stating his intention to withdraw from the race, Ciccone said he will not be able to properly focus on a campaign while addressing these issues.

Ciccone is running for the auditor seat against Democrat Vince Flask, who was appointed by Warren Democratic precinct committee members after former Auditor Anthony Natale pleaded guilty to terrorism charges. Natale was sentenced to prison for one year and a day on terrorism charges for sending an envelope filled with white powder to a former employer after he was fired.

Natale was released from prison in September.

Flask, who served as a 5th Ward councilman, believes the combination of his legislative experience, business experience as owner of several tax preparation services, and the more than a year experience in the position makes him well prepared to finish the term, which ends in December 2019.