Tuesday, July 14, 2009

Taxpayers are our partners in nation building, says BIR Normin exec


CAGAYAN DE ORO CITY – “We have always considered the taxpayers our partners in nation-building, therefore, we feel obliged to educate and update them of their tax obligations because we believe that a well-informed taxpayer is a compliant taxpayer.”

Thus stressed Noel B. Gonzales, Officer-in-Charge of Revenue District Office No. 98, Bureau of Internal Revenue (BIR), Cagayan de Oro City, who said an intensified tax awareness and information campaign is now being waged in the city to educate the business establishments of their tax obligations.

This is done through a series of lectures and dialogues with the local government unit and businessmen in our effort to win back the confidence of our people in the BIR.

It will also avoid a repeat of the tax non-payment campaign initiated by the business sector of the city, recently, as a consequence of which, Gonzales who was the RDO of Gen. Santos City was designated to head RDO 98, last March.

“In today’s global crisis, this is a special time to pay our correct taxes, so we can ensure good life for every Filipino since it is our taxes that funds government projects, such as those for infrastructure, irrigation, ports and other social services for the people,” he said.

Meanwhile, RDO 98 is now conducting the Tax Compliance Verification Drive (TCVD) or tax mapping of all business establishments in the city to check on their compliance to the BIR business tax requirements.

As such, RDO 98 has been visiting business establishments in the city to verify compliance with registration, issuance of invoices and bookkeeping requirements provided for under existing internal revenue laws, rules and regulations.

But even before these visits are conducted, the establishments are informed at least two (2) weeks, through letters of such visits and provided a list of reminders on “What Every Establishment Needs To Do,” so they could immediately comply with the basic requirements of the BIR to avoid penalties.

“Of course, we do not tell them the exact dates of the visit but I make sure that I am available during these occasion so I can explain to the businessmen their obligations rather than serve sanctions, at once, and avoid allegations that the BIR is there to harass them,” Gonzales said.

Among the violations of the TCVD are the failure of the business establishments to register with the BIR, failure to issue duly registered receipts/invoices, use and possession of unregistered receipts/invoices and unauthorized cash register and point-of-scale (POS) machines.

Such violations carry sanctions which include confiscation of unauthorized cash register and POS machines, unregistered invoices/receipts and related business tools, as well, as payment of possible deficiency taxes including increments.

These increments may include a 25% to 50% surcharge, 20% interest and compromise penalty which ranges from Php1,000 to Php50,000 depending on the nature and frequency of the violation and even imprisonment for offenses that are subject to criminal prosecution, Gonzales added.


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