A Puyallup contractor accused of stealing more than $156,000 in state sales tax revenue has pleaded not guilty.
Kurtis Hirning, 43, is charged with first-degree theft and eight counts of filing a false tax return.
Court Commissioner Meagan Foley ordered him released on his own recognizance at his arraignment Friday.
According to charging papers:
Hirning, the owner of Kurtisy Construction, improperly reported up to one-third of his business as wholesale. He also failed to report other sales entirely to avoid paying sales tax.
A state Department of Revenue audit found the alleged discrepancies.
Hirning’s attorney, Robert Chicoine, said after charges were filed that the company is still operating, and that state taxes are being paid.