LUMBERTON — County Attorney Hal Kinlaw has asked for a meeting with the county commissioners after it was made public that he is being sued by BB&T for almost $18 million in unpaid loans.
Noah Woods, chairman of the county’s Board of Commissioners, has agreed to a special meeting for 6 p.m. Monday at the county administration office. The meeting is open to the public.
BB&T filed six lawsuits against Kinlaw at the Robeson County courthouse on April 15. In addition to the attorney, his wife Marcia, Anita Jo Kinlaw Troxler, and five companies were named as defendants.
According to The Fayetteville Observer, the bank in its lawsuits have cited Kinlaw with making 56 transactions that date back to 2001 and total about $17.8 million. Kinlaw has said that since December, he has paid $6 million toward the unpaid loans.
Brian Davis, a spokesman for BB&T, which is headquartered in Winston-Salem, said Friday that BB&T is “unable to comment on pending litigation.”
Kinlaw, Robeson County’s attorney for 23 years, told The Robesonian on Friday that he was in a “bad investment scenario” and “trying to work out a way to pay everything back.”
Kinlaw said that his problems center on several tracts of land he has purchased over the years in Onslow and other coastal counties for development companies. None of the land exists in Robeson County, he said.
He told The Robesonian that the value of the properties has depreciated so much over the past few years that the bank now contends the collateral they need to renew his loan no longer exists.
Kinlaw said he plans to have the properties re-appraised and refinanced with other banks in order to pay BB&T.
“I will pay it all off, but it is going to take time,” Kinlaw said.
On Thursday, a reporter went to the Clerk of Court’s Office to review the six pending civil suits against Kinlaw. Before the office closed for the day, the reporter was only able to review two of the files, which along with Kinlaw named two companies as defendants. Those companies were McClaw Group Inc., and Parnell Kinlaw Group Inc. In those two cases, BB&T is requesting repayment of loans in excess $7.8 million.
On Friday, the reporter returned to the Clerk of Court’s office to review the remaining four files, but was told that the files were not immediately available for public review.
But according to The Fayetteville Observer, the three companies listed as defendants in those lawsuits along with Kinlaw — who is named in the loan documents as vice president or secretary of the companies — are Webb Creek Water and Sewage; Group Eight Ltd; and Kinlaw Investment Co.
The Robesonian has also learned that Kinlaw owes several thousand dollars in unpaid taxes in Robeson County on business property, although The Robesonian was unable to get an exact amount.
According to County Manager Ricky Harris, Robeson County has a policy of garnisheeing wages of county employees who do not pay personal property taxes. The county, however, does not do the same for taxes owed on businesses, Harris said.
According to Harris, Kinlaw, who also operates a private practice, has been receiving a salary of $179,242 from the county.
Harris said Kinlaw also is paid by the county for expenses incurred when he requires assistance from other attorneys for such things as defending the county in a lawsuit. According to the School of Government at the University of North Carolina, Kinlaw charged the county $366,405 for additonal fees during 2012.
Kinlaw told The Robesonian he has not drawn a salary since November.