Wednesday, January 7, 2009

GOP Tax Amnesty Plan on Governor's Desk

A GOP–sponsored tax amnesty plan targeting the state’s tax scofflaws is on Governor Patrick’s desk awaiting his signature.

House Minority Leader Bradley H. Jones, Jr. and Senate Minority Leader Richard R. Tisei proposed the amendment as part of a multi-million dollar budget bailout bill approved by the Legislature last October.

The GOP leaders say the amnesty program will run for a two-month period to be determined by the Department of Revenue Commissioner. Representative Jones and Senator Tisei say the program encourages delinquent taxpayers to voluntarily pay off their back taxes by waiving penalties as an incentive.

“We have a very grave fiscal crisis here in the Commonwealth and according to the DOR, this program will generate an estimated $10-20 million,” said Representative Jones. “That is a significant sum of money that the state very much needs at this time. I’m hopeful that this tax amnesty program will provide the same success previous plans have accomplished.”

“By offering a tax amnesty, we are giving taxpayers a chance to clear up any outstanding tax liabilities while generating much-needed revenues for the Commonwealth,” said Senator Tisei. “We hope Governor Patrick recognizes the benefits of this program and will act quickly to sign the bill.”

Previous tax amnesties offered in 2002 and 2003 brought in $91.6 million and $174 million respectively.