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SOAB to review method to collect road tax on St. Maarten


PHILIPSBURG–Government Accountant Bureau SOAB has been asked by Finance Minister by Finance Minister Martin Hassink to compile an overview of the actions taken to collect road tax this year, which resulted in government not receiving the level of income as in previous years. The outstanding amount of unpaid road tax is “substantial,” standing at a “minimum of one million guilders,” according to the Minister.

SOAB has also been asked to give the Finance Ministry “some ideas and advice” to approach the collection of road tax in “a different and more efficient way.” Number plates have been ordered for 2014. The aim is to have the number plates available at the Receiver’s Office as of January 1.

Hassink said ways to prevent taxpayers from facing long lines when paying their road tax are being sought.  For 2013, former Finance Minister Roland Tuitt had decided that no new number plates or stickers would be issued to motorists when they paid their road tax. This led to a number of motorists not paying their road tax, because there was no visible way to determine who had paid or not paid.

Hassink said there should have been more road controls by police, but he did acknowledge that the police should not focus on collecting taxes.  Whether those who did not pay their road tax this year will be faced with an additional fee, or will have to pay the back taxes is not clear. The Minister said he has “conflicting reports” on this matter. It is being further looked into.

Source: The Daily Herald, St. Maarten

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