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Shaheen releases tax return documents

Last modified: 6/25/2014 1:49:01 PM
U.S. Sen. Jeanne Shaheen made eight years worth of joint tax returns with her husband, Bill, public yesterday, which revealed the couple made $505,786 in 2013 and paid a tax rate of 25.14 percent.

The release came five days after Scott Brown, Shaheen’s potential Republican challenger, released his and his wife’s joint returns and called on Shaheen to do the same. Several weeks before, Shaheen told WMUR that she would release hers if her opponents did. Brown’s Republican primary rivals, Jim Rubens and Bob Smith, have not released their tax returns.

Both campaigns made the returns available to reporters for six hours and did not allow photographs or photocopies of the returns. It is uncommon for New Hampshire candidates to release their tax returns, and Shaheen has never done so in her previous statewide and national campaigns.

The Shaheens made more than $400,000 in each year dating back to 2006, except in 2010, when they brought in $186,787 after adjustments and paid a tax rate of 6 percent. As a U.S. senator since 2008, Jeanne Shaheen has earned $174,000 annually. Bill Shaheen’s income comes from his work at Shaheen & Gordon, his Concord-based law firm, as well as various investments and real estate properties.

“The majority of the investments and business interests are in Mr. Shaheen’s name because he makes all decisions on and controls those investments and interests,” campaign spokesman Harrell Kirstein said in a release.

The couple’s home in Madbury is in Jeanne Shaheen’s name, Kirstein said.

In 2010, the Shaheens’ total income was $522,000 before adjustments, but recorded more than $300,000 in losses, leaving the gross adjusted income at $186,000. A large piece of the loss came through investments in a company called JID Software LLC, an investment that yielded a loss in several other years as well, the documents showed.

Other companies the couple has investments in include Trela Associates, Shaheen Enterprises, Route 125 Associates and Atlas Title LLC. The tax returns for the privately held companies were not released with the Shaheens’ returns yesterday, meaning details about the investments were sparse.

Bill Shaheen has made at least several hundred thousand dollars annually at his law firm, including $456,000 in 2013, and Jeanne Shaheen was out of elected office from 2002 to 2008. Before her 2008 election to the U.S. Senate, she made $19,000 in speaking and teaching fees in both 2006 and 2007 and $120,000 as director of Harvard University’s Institute of Politics in 2007.

Since 2006, the Shaheens have owned various properties in Conway, Madbury and Gonic, as well as property in York, Maine. According to the documents, the Shaheens purchased a cottage in York in 2005 and recorded $161,000 in casualty or theft loss on their 2006 returns.

The Shaheens gave between $9,274 and $17,439 annually to charity from 2006 to 2013, making up between 2 and 7 percent of their income. The list of organizations they gave to were not included in any of the returns.

Brown and his wife, Gail Huff, made $474,080 in 2013 and paid an effective tax rate of 24.1 percent. In his unsuccessful 2012 campaign for U.S. Senate in Massachusetts, Brown released six years worth of tax returns at the request of the Boston Globe.

(Kathleen Ronayne can be reached at 369-3309 or kronayne@cmonitor.com or on Twitter @kronayne.)


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