CHEYENNE, Wyo. -- U.S. Senate candidate Liz Cheney and her husband were more than two months late paying property taxes on a $1.6 million home they bought last year in the tony northwest Wyoming community of Jackson Hole, according to Teton County records.
The oversight arose when they misunderstood the terms of their purchase of the four-bedroom, four-bath log home with views of the Teton Range, Cheney said Wednesday.
"As soon as we learned the tax hadn't been paid for the first half of the year, we paid the tax," she said.
Cheney said that instead of the seller paying the taxes for the first half of 2012 at closing, as she and her husband thought had happened, money for those taxes was deducted from the amount they paid at closing.
Cheney said the property tax notifications were mailed to her other home in McLean, Va., and that's why she wasn't aware of the situation sooner.
Cheney is the elder daughter of former Vice President Dick Cheney. She announced two weeks ago she is running against Wyoming's senior U.S. senator, Mike Enzi, a fellow Republican who has served almost three terms.
Cheney and her husband, Philip Perry, closed on their house in the Jackson Hole enclave of Wilson on May 23, 2012.
The couple owed $4,482.43 in taxes on the home for the first half of 2012. The payment was due Sept. 1 and considered delinquent starting Nov. 10. Teton County records show Cheney and her husband didn't pay until Jan. 29.
State law provides for a late penalty of 18 percent a year, although public records don't show such a penalty.
Cheney paid the full amount owed for 2012, $8,964.85, on Jan. 29, even though property taxes for the second half of 2012 weren't due until March 1, county records show.
The tax records show an official "market" value of the home of $1.63 million and an assessed value, for tax purposes, of $155,000. The assessed value is consistent with the statewide rate of 9.5 percent of market value.
The amount that Cheney and her husband paid for the house isn't publicly known. Wyoming is among just a handful of states where home sale prices are kept confidential.
Cheney, 47, has five children ages 7 to 19. She enrolled her school-age children in Jackson Hole schools last year. Her husband is an attorney with the Washington, D.C., firm Latham & Watkins.
Cheney has lived most of her life outside Wyoming but traces her family roots in the state to 1907 settlers and describes herself as a fourth-generation Wyomingite.