Commission discusses tax collection

Published 11:50 pm Wednesday, March 30, 2011

During the work session of Monday night’s County Commission meeting, John Paradise, senior tax analyst with the Alabama Department of Revenue, asked the commission to allow the state to continue collecting the county’s taxes.

Many counties have changed their tax collection services to a private third party, but Paradise explained the advantages the ADR has.

“We have access to things no one else does,” he said.

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That includes diverting income tax refunds to pay a sales tax debt and access to other records.

The ADR would also be responsible for audits, and it offers online filing, which Paradise said the taxpayers have adopted “tremendously.”

“Why does the state want this?” Paradise asked. “It’s simpler for the taxpayer. Alabama is the poster child for difficult local tax collection.”

“I want to see this state succeed, and I want to see Crenshaw County grow, even though I live in Shelby County,” he added.

The comission did not take any action regarding the collection and is expected to make a decision following the first meeting in April.

At that meeting, the commission will hear from a representative of Revenue Discovery Systems.

During the meeting, the commission voted to pursue a Community Development Block Grant for a Tucker Road project.

“We’ve got to get the water line out from under the road,” said commissioner Chris West. The poor state of the road was also cited as a reason for pursuing the grant.

Commissioner Charlie Sankey abstained from voting because he lives on the road.

In other business, the commission voted to stay with the South Central Alabama Development Commission for grant writing during the upcoming grant period.

The commission also approved August 5-7 as the annual sales tax holiday.