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News Release from Comptroller Susan Combs

Contact: Allen Spelce or R.J. DeSilva
512-463-4070

For Immediate Release
September 20, 2007

Comptroller's Amnesty Program Snares More Than $100 Million in Delinquent Taxes


AUSTIN — Comptroller Susan Combs’ tax amnesty program, Project Fresh Start, brought in more than $100 million in unpaid taxes, including more than $90 million in state taxes and more than $10 million owed to local governments.

“These successful results far exceed our expectations,” Combs said. “The tax amnesty brought in $47 million in sales tax, $46 million in franchise tax and varying amounts of 19 other taxes.”

During the Project Fresh Start amnesty period, June 15 through Aug. 15, a total of 1,258 businesses reported and paid delinquent taxes. About 3 percent to 5 percent were new taxpayers operating businesses without required tax permits and without paying state taxes. In exchange for their cooperation and payment, the Comptroller waived penalty and interest charges normally added to delinquent taxes.

“Now that these businesses have a fresh start, I hope they will continue to be honest, law-abiding taxpayers,” Combs said. “The new businesses we have added to the tax rolls will generate revenues for the state and local governments for many years to come.”

Only businesses with tax deficiencies that had not yet been discovered by the Comptroller’s office were eligible for the amnesty. Businesses that were being audited and businesses the Comptroller’s office had already contacted regarding delinquent taxes were not eligible.

“I want to thank and commend every business owner who did the right thing and came forward to clear up unpaid, underreported and overdue taxes,” Combs said. “I am committed to seeing to it that every business meets its obligation to pay its fair share of taxes.”

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