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Former Harvard Motorola campus property taxes go delinquent again

Edward Harvard Holdings fails to pay for 2nd time

The owner of the long-vacant former Motorola property, 2001 N. Division St., Harvard, again has failed to pay property taxes on the 1.52 million-square-foot corporate campus.
The owner of the long-vacant former Motorola property, 2001 N. Division St., Harvard, again has failed to pay property taxes on the 1.52 million-square-foot corporate campus.

For the second time, the owner of the long-vacant former Motorola property has failed to pay property taxes on his 1.52 million-square-foot corporate campus at 2001 N. Division St. in Harvard.

Edward Harvard Holdings LLC, owned by Canadian Chinese business tycoon Xiao Hua Gong, has not paid either installment on the site’s property taxes. The first installment of the bill was due in June, and the second was due in September.

Now he has until Friday to pay the $352,472 he owes the county or the taxes will go to auction Monday, according to the county. That sum includes $17,581 in penalty fees, according to county records.

Gong bought the 325-acre property at an online auction for $9.3 million in April 2016, and he announced plans to turn the facility into a smartphone manufacturing company in March 2017.

Gong then seemed to remove himself from the conversation.

Edward Harvard Holdings had planned to apply for economic development incentives through the Harvard-Woodstock Enterprise Zone to execute his $32 million proposal, but he never completed the application, and officials said he stopped talking to them about his plans for the property.

“All dark on our end,” City Administrator Dave Nelson said Wednesday. “Not sure what is going on. ... They are up to date on paying the water bills.”

Gong allowed property taxes to fall delinquent the first time when he failed to pay the second installment on the $325,437 tax bill Sept. 9, 2017.

An auction company bought the taxes at a McHenry County tax sale Oct. 30, 2017, according to county records.

Gong redeemed the taxes Dec. 18, 2017. A new sign was put up on the property this spring, and the facility is staffed by a security company.

The property manager has been unavailable to comment in the past year, and he was not in the office Wednesday.

Gong continues to face legal trouble abroad.

He was arrested Dec. 28, 2017, in Canada amid fraud accusations in connection with the sale of hundreds of millions of dollars worth in securities for 024 Pharma Inc. and Canada National TV Inc. to people in China, according to the Ontario Securities Commission.

The case is ongoing.

“The owner has not been engaging with the city,” Harvard Mayor Michael Kelly said. “We await the outcome of his legal situation.”

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