The House Tax Policy Committee moved out new legislation to allow employers and the Department of Treasury to settle certain tax disputes through an agreement during an informal conference. The decision comes one week after MMA testified in support of the bill.
House Bill 4976 (Representative Jim Tedder, R-Clarkston) would amend 1941 PA 122 (the Revenue Act) to introduce a new, permissive manner for a taxpaying employer and the Treasury to settle any or all issues in dispute by submitting a written settlement offer to the other party.
“This legislation is significant regulatory reform that brings common sense to the administrative process in the Department of Treasury,” testified Mike Johnston, MMA vice president of government affairs. “By providing opportunities for Treasury to resolve tax disputes with employers, when it makes sense to resolve them, it reduces the expense and administrative burden of the judicial path for all parties.”
Currently, when informal conversations occur between Treasury and taxpayers regarding a dispute, they become essentially part of an early discovery process for both sides as they build their cases for future court hearings. The process is an inefficient use of administrative resources.
“When clearly reasonable solutions are possible, the State Treasurer should have the authority to settle disputes,” said Johnston. “This bill provides that opportunity and we thank the Treasury for taking on an issue raised by MMA and our membership and working diligently to craft a solution.”
The legislation remains in front of the full House and was moved to third reading last week. A vote is expected shortly.