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Greensboro mayor lists more than $10M in debt in filing for bankruptcy

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GREENSBORO, N.C. — Greensboro Mayor Robbie Perkins listed more than $10 million in debt on Friday when he filed for Chapter 7 bankruptcy, according to court records.

Perkins’ total assets in personal and real property amount to $1,429,522, according to documents from the U.S. Bankruptcy Court of the Western District of N.C.

The documents list his total liabilities — what he owes to creditors holding unsecured and secured claims -- is listed at $10,888,967.

Most of the debts are related to Perkins’ real estate development business, which he says has struggled along with the slow economy.

Perkins is also in a legal battle with his estranged wife and is disputing certain support payments.

"All I was doing was spinning my wheels. I was in quicksand, and I needed to get out," Mayor Perkins told FOX8 during an interview Tuesday.

Perkins is a partner at the real estate firm NAI Piedmont Triad.

"Our real estate company has about 450 signs out trying to sell or lease properties in this market now," he said. "I keep telling people if we only had 200 signs out, I wouldn't be talking to you about this."

Perkins owes hundreds of thousands of dollars for a mortgage on a home in Irving Park, plus millions of dollars on a string of bank loans for his business.

He also owes $195,000 in state and federal income taxes, and about $32,000 to Greensboro Day School, a private school in the city.

Perkins continued, "I tried for five years to be able to move out of this. But the combination of not being able to settle a domestic dispute and the way the debt was leveraged, which wouldn't be the case today, caused me to have to file."

On top of the weight of financial trouble, the obligations of being Mayor are ever time-consuming. Tuesday, Perkins joined Mobile Meals of Greensboro to drop off food to senior citizens.

One woman he greeted wished the Mayor well in his personal struggles. "It's gonna be fine," he replied with a smile.

While he works to maintain his image as Mayor of the state's third largest city, Perkins said he does not see his bankruptcy as a stain on Greensboro.

"Unfortunately I couldn't scramble enough to avoid the bankruptcy, but I think there is light at the end of my personal tunnel,” he said. “I'm looking forward to a very positive future personally, professionally and for the city of Greensboro."

He said he plans to continue pushing forward programs that help citizens in Greensboro.

"I'm moving on,” he said. “I'm moving on in both my business and in my personal life and moving forward for the city of Greensboro to create the types of jobs and opportunities that our citizens deserve."

Perkins said he does not believe his financial troubles have impacted his service as mayor.