Sunday, November 08, 2015

Thanks, Pence: That letter you received about back taxes? It's fraudulent.

The News and Tribune ran an AP account of this story, but the one from The Journal Gazette (Ft. Wayne) is better and provides missing context.

In short, the state of Indiana engaged Navient, a Virginia-based "contractor," to be the official collections agency for its plan to harvest tax amnesty dollars. Left to its own devices, the contractor, which stands to benefit in proportion to the proceeds, clumsily "fished" Hoosier taxpayers with a letter implying they owed back taxes -- but didn't.

I knew it was garbage when I received it, a judgment affirmed by several on-line tax preparers and accountants.

It's a characteristically shabby episode in our saga of life in Pence World, and yet there's another angle to it, namely the volume of tax amnesty proceeds. After all, these are slated to fund the Regional Cities Initiative program.

Can we apply eminent domain to Navient?

State halts tax amnesty letter sent by contractor, by Niki Kelly

INDIANAPOLIS - The Indiana Department of Revenue has halted a letter sent by a state contractor that mischaracterizes 150,000 Hoosiers as owing back taxes.

The letter essentially was fishing for people to participate in the state's tax amnesty program and resulted in numerous complaints.

With only a few days left the amnesty program has brought in $54.8 million in cash payments - well below the projected totals ...

 ... The Indiana legislature authorized the amnesty at the request of Gov. Mike Pence. The first $84 million of the program is set to fund a regional cities economic development initiative. And the next $6 million goes to the Hoosier State Rail Line.

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