FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
May 1, 2012
Limited Time Tax Amnesty Begins for Ohio Taxpayers
Ohio General Tax Amnesty Program runs from May 1 to June 15
COLUMBUS, Ohio, May 1, 2012 – Ohio is offering taxpayers an opportunity to pay off certain back taxes without costly penalties and with only half the regular interest charge. That opportunity begins today with the opening of the 2012 Ohio General Tax Amnesty Program.
Ohio Tax Commissioner Joe Testa is urging delinquent taxpayers to take advantage of the program because the cost of settling tax debt will never be lower, “Millions of dollars of taxes go unpaid every year, often because of simple filing mistakes. This amnesty program is designed to give taxpayers an incentive to catch up and it’s a way to reinforce the integrity and equity of our tax system. It’s important that all of us are involved and participate.”
The General Tax Amnesty Program, initiated last year by the Ohio General Assembly, grants authority to waive penalties on unreported or underreported taxes incurred and payable prior to May 1, 2011.
State Representative Peter Beck, chairman of the Ohio House Ways and Means Committee, said the program benefits all involved, “Tax amnesty is good for individuals, businesses and the State of Ohio. Taxpayers can clear up their tax debts and have a fresh start while the State gains much-needed revenue without raising taxes or spending money auditing a taxpayer. It’s a winner all the way around.”
A Tax Amnesty website provides extensive information to help Ohioans and others who owe taxes administered by the Ohio Department of Taxation to take advantage of the program.
“The last General Tax Amnesty Program, in 2006, resulted in thousands of participants and the collection of nearly $60 million,” Testa noted.
The 2012 General Tax Amnesty covers most state and some local taxes, including individual income taxes, school district income taxes, sales taxes and the Commercial Activity Tax. A similar, but separate, program offering amnesty for the Consumer’s Use Tax also is under way.
Testa noted that the Ohio Department of Taxation continues to strengthen its discovery and enforcement capabilities but would prefer that taxpayers come forward on their own. “Amnesty is a way for Ohioans to meet their obligations without the pain of alternatives that are more costly to the taxpayer and the State,” Testa said.
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Watch the television ads (below) that are informing taxpayers about the Ohio Tax Amnesty program.
Media Contact: Gary Gudmundson, Ohio Department of Taxation