Hello Blue Mass Group friends,
For those who don’t know me, my name is Steve May, I’m from Hull, and I am a candidate for State Senate in the Plymouth and Norfolk district running to represent Weymouth, Hingham, Hull, Cohasset, Scituate, Marshfield, Norwell and Duxbury.
We need to address the growing budget gap in Massachusetts without hurting low income and middle class residents. I’m calling on the State Legislature to embrace a comprehensive effort which would include a 60-day tax amnesty for unreported assets and income taxable in Massachusetts. I also see a need to increase the number of enforcement agents at the State Department of Revenue and additionally double fines and create mandatory minimum jail terms of twenty-four months per count for tax evasion.
We have a problem here in Massachusetts. Money is tight. With schools, roads, water systems and bridges all in various states of decay, The state of Massachusetts’ need to replace parts of the State’s infrastructure. Essential services all need to be funded. Our Commonwealth faces a revenue gap not seen in Massachusetts for decades. With value flowing out of the homes of ordinary Bay Staters and fewer jobs leading to less revenue from payroll and corporate taxes, our circumstances are dire. I’m calling on the State Legislature to implement my plan which offers an aggressive approach in line with our current financial straits.
We are fighting two wars, and are in the midst of the most challenging economy since the Great Depression… this is not the time to starve government or ignore basic human needs for the increasing ranks of financially-challenged families across this state. The very idea that people whom enjoy the fruits of freedom and liberty as American citizens and Massachusetts residents are actively evading seeking to shirk their responsibility to the commonwealth is unacceptable.
Under more robust financial times the state would be able to count on payroll taxes to provide a larger percentage of funding to the general operating budget of our Commonwealth. The community’s needs do not end because we are in a period of economic weakness, they actually increase. There is a substantial gap between what is necessary to meet the basic needs of Bay State residents and the actual monies coming into government coffers.
All avenues available to the people of Massachusetts must be explored in an effort to stave off our current budget crisis. In a world where millions of dollars can be moved in the time it takes to click a mouse, a 60-day tax amnesty is more than adequate to encourage people who have stashed their monies in the Cayman Islands or on the Isle of Man to return their assets home. Massachusetts residents who fail to bring their monies back to the Bay State should face consequences severe enough to deter their continued criminal conduct. My proposal would double fines for tax evasion and adds a mandatory minimum sentence of 24 months per count.
I’d love to hear your thoughts on this proposal, and I invite you to visit my website to learn more about my candidacy: Steve2012.com.
Candidate for State Senate
Steve, count me in. Anything we can do to increase revenue without increasing taxes is a great idea to me.
I remembered reading this in a trade publication at work, but here it is from another source: the return on investment at the IRS for new agents is $4.50 in revenue for every dollar spent on agents. Good deal.
I noticed an advertisement in a Boston periodical for a New Hampshire business that reminded people there was “No Sales Tax!” as if it was perfectly reasonable and legal to go to New Hampshire to evade the Massachusetts sales tax. So is the amnesty period a time when people are allowed to pay their outstanding Use Taxes without facing the fines and jail time for tax evasion? And then after the amnesty period, they risk fines and jail time? Is it possible to find them, and prove they evaded taxes?
all those tax-evading Amazon shoppers. Two years in jail for not paying the sales tax on a DVD seems somewhat harsh.
and the police can choose what to police, they can let scofflaws go.
“My proposal would double fines for tax evasion and adds a mandatory minimum sentence of 24 months per count.”
Also, once the cops go to the effort to track down the Amazon-shopping scofflaw, they are not so likely to just wave it off, the way they might if they see some NH cigarettes in his car at a traffic stop.
Mandatory minimum jail sentences are never a good idea in practice. They might sound good when the law is first proposed, but in this case, I’m sure it’ll be dropped from the final bill, there aren’t enough jails. Doubling the maximum fine is a good idea, as is the amnesty period.
And there is hardly any effort involved, just subpoena the records, get warrants, and then have a few officers make some visits to see if the stuff is indeed being used, starting with the easiest and most lucrative cases.
So it’s not feasible or desirable to turn loose Department of Revenue agents on MASS consumers coming back from Keene, Nashua or Portsmouth though technically shopping across the state line is a form of tax evasion. The real issue is that folks are off-shoring large sums of money, and they are doing so deliberately to avoid paying their fair share to support essential services for the people of this Commonwealth.
Also as I understand it, the elements of tax evasion as a criminal offense requires that the underlying offense involve an amount of money exceeding more than $25k and needs to occur in a systemic fashion.
The state had an amnesty for individual taxpayers individual taxpayers in 2009 and for business taxpayers last year. There would probably a law-of-diminishing-returns problem for a while at least.
Good luck with your run.
Mark L. Bail says
the plan for a tax holiday for multi-nationals? See http://vps28478.inmotionhosting.com/~bluema24/2011/10/army-of-former-dc-staffers-lobby-for-tax-holiday
Something’s not adding up here. Don’t people who park their assets in off-shore accounts know how to hide and access their money? Why would they want to repatriate it?Are we going to offer drug dealers 60 days to launder money?
What’s the cost-benefit analysis to your proposal? Will enough money be recovered to justify costs?