Amendment ID: S35-19

Amendment 19

Tax Amnesty

Mr. Moore moves that the proposed new text be amended by inserting after section _____ the following section:-

"SECTION XX. (a) Notwithstanding any general or special law to the contrary, the commissioner of revenue shall establish a tax amnesty program for all taxes collected during which period all penalties that could be assessed by the commissioner shall be waived without the need for any showing by the taxpayer of reasonable cause or the absence of willful neglect for the failure of the taxpayer to: (i) timely file any proper return for any tax type and for any tax period; (ii) file proper returns which report the full amount of the taxpayer's liability for any tax type and for any tax period; (iii) timely pay any tax liability; or (iv) pay the proper amount of any required estimated payment toward a tax liability. The waiver of a taxpayer’s liability under this section shall apply if the taxpayer files returns, makes payments as required by the commissioner or otherwise comes into compliance with the tax laws of the commonwealth as required by the commissioner pursuant to the tax amnesty program.

(b) The amnesty program shall be established for 2 consecutive months within fiscal year 2022 to be determined by the commissioner, such period to expire not later than June 30, 2021, and all required payments shall be made on or before June 30, 2021, in order for the amnesty to apply. If a taxpayer fails to pay the full liability before June 30, 2021, the commissioner shall retain any payments made and shall apply those payments against the outstanding liability, and the provisions of the tax amnesty program shall not apply.

(c) The commissioner's authority to waive penalties during the amnesty period shall not apply to any taxpayer who, before the start date of the amnesty program selected was the subject of a tax-related criminal investigation or prosecution.

(d) The commissioner may offer tax amnesty to those taxpayers who have either an unpaid self-assessed liability or who have been assessed a tax liability, whether before or after the filing of a return, which assessed liability, remains unpaid. The amnesty program shall authorize the waiver of interest, or any amount treated as interest, as further provided in this section. No interest shall be due for taxpayers paying in full any self-assessed tax liability. For those taxpayers with an outstanding audit or assessment and in accordance with the considerations outlined in sections 37A and 37C of Chapter 62C of the General Laws: 25% of the interest rate as defined in section 32 of Chapter 62C, herein the applicable interest rate, so long as the taxpayer pays in full and final settlement less than 50% of the tax liability assessed by the commissioner; 50% of the applicable interest so long as the taxpayer pays in full and final settlement more than 50% but less than 79% of the tax assessed by the commissioner; and if the taxpayer pays in full and final settlement more than 80% of the tax assessed, no reduction in the applicable interest rate shall be granted to the taxpayer.

(e) To the extent that a taxpayer within the scope of the amnesty program and wishing to participate in the amnesty program has postponed the payment of an assessment of tax, interest and penalty under the authority of subsection (e) of section 32 of chapter 62C of the General Laws, the taxpayer shall waive in writing all rights under said subsection (e) of said section 32 of said chapter 62C further delay the payment of the tax and interest portions of the assessment. The tax and interest portions of the assessment shall be payable in full from the date of the commissioner's notice of assessment. Upon payment by the taxpayer of the tax and interest of the outstanding assessment, the commissioner shall waive all penalties associated with that assessment. The taxpayer and the commissioner shall then proceed with all administrative appeal rights that the taxpayer wishes to pursue with respect to the assessment.

(f) Amnesty shall not apply to those penalties which the commissioner would not have the sole authority to waive including, but not limited to, fuel taxes administered under the International

Fuel Tax Agreement or under the local option portions of taxes or excises collected for the benefit of cities, towns or state governmental authorities.

(g) The commissioner shall maintain records of the amnesty provided under this section including, but not limited to: (i) the number of taxpayers provided with amnesty; (ii) the types of tax liability for which amnesty was provided and, for each type of liability, the amount of tax liability collected and the amount of penalties foregone by virtue of the amnesty program; and (iii) the total outstanding tax liability for amnesty-eligible taxpayers at the conclusion of the tax amnesty program after the collection of all funds under this section. The commissioner shall file a report detailing such information with the clerks of the house of representatives and the senate, the joint committee on revenue, the house and senate committees on ways and means, the minority leader of the house and the minority leader of the senate not later than September 1, 2021; provided, however, that such report shall not contain information sufficient to identify an individual taxpayer or the amnesty that an individual taxpayer was provided under this section.

(g) A taxpayer who is eligible for the amnesty program based upon the criteria established by the commissioner and who fails to come forward under the tax amnesty program and make payments before June 30, 2021 shall, in addition to all other penalties provided by chapter 62C of the General Laws, be subject to an additional penalty not to exceed $500 per taxpayer, which shall be calculated and assessed according to rules determined by the commissioner and which may be subject to de minimis or other exceptions that the commissioner may consider appropriate. This penalty shall be subject to said chapter 62C and shall be added to and become part of the tax due. The commissioner may waive the penalty provided by this subsection for reasonable cause as provided in subsection (f) of section 33 of said chapter 62C."