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28 Oct 1111 On them and us

MEMBER 194 writes:

"It was heartening to read in the newspaper that the Commissioner is seeking a pay rise of $300,000 so he will have a package of around of $800,000.

I must admit I had been harbouring suspicions that he and his department did not have any empathy with the ordinary person, particularly the small business person.

These suspicions had been caused by actions such as -

  • Implementing a tax return processing system under which small taxpayer's refunds can be delayed weeks or even months without any indication as to why
  • Having tax collectors insist some struggling small business owners pay 50% of their tax debt up front before they will consider a payment arrangement
  • Introducing an interpretation of Division 7A so that small business owners operating through trusts with company beneficiaries have to jump through legislative hoops if they want to retain any undistributed funds for use within their business.

But I was wrong. Clearly the Commissioner is one of us. He too must be finding things are tough. How can one possibly get by on a paltry $500K? It is almost inhumane. I hope the government can find it in its heart to give him the extra money. Meanwhile, I must get back to chasing up the ATO to find why my client's massive refund of $2,000 has been delayed for over 4 weeks."

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