Hospitality owner receives $309,000 grant, owes back taxes


SIOUS FALLS (AP) – Records show a South Dakota motel and hotel owner has received a federal coronavirus small business relief grant of more than $300,000 and still owes thousands of dollars in back taxes on his properties.

KELO-TV reports AG Dakota, owned by Alan Gross, of Covina, California, once owned 20 motels across the state, but now is down to two properties, the Wagner Lakeside Motel in Wagner and America's Best Value Inn & Suites hotel in Clear Lake.

About a year ago, AG Dakota owed at least $72,000 in back taxes for at least eight motels in South Dakota. Gross says he has worked out payments with his vendors and that his property taxes are up to date.

Records show the company has just received a small business grant of roughly $309,000 from the federal CARES Act.

Gross says he plans to use the grant money to remodel the Wagner Lakeside Motel and pay off his bills more quickly. He said that at one point last fall, business at that motel was down 70 percent.

Records show AG Dakota still owes $14,590 in back taxes in Deuel County, where its Clear Lake hotel is located and about $10,600 in Charles Mix County, where the Wagner motel is located.

AG Dakota also owns roughly $17,000 in back taxes in Edmunds and McCook counties where he used to own properties, KELO-TV reported.

Gross did not immediately return a message from The Associated Press for further comment.

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