Businesses bewail delay in City’s settlement of tax credits

The City Treasurer says that the tax credits will apply upon payment of retailing business owners in third or fourth quarter this year.

Around 7,200 business retailers have yet to get the tax credit amounting to around P10 million from their excess taxes collected by the city government this year.

Rante Ramos, a public accountant and a member of the Puerto Princesa City Chamber of Commerce and Industry Inc., said the city government’s promise of granting them tax credit before the year ends remains unfulfilled.

“The year is coming to an end. What’s the status of the promised notice of tax credit from the excessive business tax collected by the city government?” Ramos posted on his Facebook account Friday, November 3.

“If the taxpayers are delayed in settling their taxes, the government are imposing surcharge and interest on them. But what if it’s the other way around?”

In January, Ramos lodged a complaint before the City Council after noticing the overcharging when the city government started to implement its revised revenue code.

“If they will not correct it right away, it means they will continue to collect excessively,” Ramos told Palawan News in a previous interview.

In April, the City Council passed an ordinance amending the city’s tax code and granting tax credit to business retailers who had been overtaxed since beginning this year.

The ordinance directed the city treasurer “to compute, verify and issue tax credit due to qualified taxpayers considering the situation of each case.”

“The computed tax credits shall be applied to future taxes payable, and this fact shall thus be reflected appropriately in all notices for tax credits,” the ordinance added.

The affected retailers can apply for tax credits retroactive from January 3, 2017.

City Treasurer Ma. Corazon Abayari told Palawan News in an interview last August that the tax credits would be applied upon payment of retailing business owners in third or fourth quarter this year.

The ordinance, however, was only published in Palawan News in the first week of October, the month when business taxpayers should pay their corresponding taxes for the year’s last quarter.

“Most probably, if they already paid their taxes last October, they could avail the tax credit when they pay on or before January 20, 2018,” Bert Condesa, City Hall’s Business Taxes and Fees Division chief, told Palawan News on Saturday, November 4.

The taxes and fees, officer assured that “the excess tax will be converted into tax credit, which will be deducted in their future payables.”

“For those who did not meet the deadline and would be paying their taxes with penalty, let’s see if we can update the tax credit in the system before the year ends,” he said.

Condesa said that in the second quarter, his office estimated around P10 million in excess tax collection.

“That’s just an estimation for the whole year. We assessed their taxes up to the last quarter and from there we calculated the possible excess. Actually, we’ve yet to collect them all since many are yet to settle their business taxes despite the deadline for paying for the last quarter already ended last month,” he said.

Abayari said they are just awaiting for the notification from the City Council after the ordinance was published in a newspaper a few weeks ago.

“After its publication, it will be forwarded to the City’s Management Information System whose task is to maintain and update our system. They will make the necessary adjustment and the tax credit will soon appear automatically,” Abayari told Palawan News in a separate interview.

Ramos, meanwhile, said if the city government would grant the tax credit by January 2018, it would cause delay in the renewal of business permits.

“Now is the best time so the clarificatory questions would be answered right away by the City Business Taxes and Fees Division,” he said.

Condesa replied: “We could give the tax credit right away, but there’s a process that we need to follow.”


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