Tax scofflaws earn place in ‘Cyber Hall of Shame’
DENVER – Tax scofflaws, beware: The state has your number.Colorado has put 1,053 individuals and 368 businesses on the “Cyber Hall of Shame” Web site because the state says they owe $55 million in back taxes.One man alone owes $1.3 million, officials say.House Majority Leader Alice Madden, D-Boulder, who sponsored the legislation setting up the Internet site beginning in 2004, said an additional 5,000 college students could get stipends or the state could hire 30 new state troopers if people would pay their debts.In 2003, before the site went into operation, the state collected $823,858 in back taxes. After it went into effect, collections rose to $5.3 million in 2004 and $5.8 million in 2005 before dropping back to $5.1 last year.”Colorado provides significant services to its citizens and we can do even more if everyone simply plays their part,” Madden said in a written statement.”With even part of these back taxes, we can help provide health care coverage for some of the uninsured children, we can open more Division of Motor Vehicle offices, we can offer more scholarships, we can repair a few crumbling schools and we can pay back some of the cash funds that we raided during the last recession,” she said.The Web site publishes the names and address of individuals or businesses where the debt to the state exceeds $20,000 for at least six months. Lawmakers said it will be difficult to collect all the money because some businesses do not exist anymore and some individuals might be out of state.The statutory limit for the state to collect back taxes is 10 years. The details remain posted until taxes are paid in full.For the 2002 tax year, the state tried a tax amnesty that brought in millions of dollars.The delinquent taxes came from 2,984 individuals and businesses that filed 12,596 returns. The amounts ranged from just over $1 million to $100 or less.Sales and use taxes totaled more than $8 million of the collections. Individual income taxes amounted to $4.9 million, while corporate and fiduciary taxes made up $6.1 million. —On the Net:Cyber Hall of Shame: http://www.businesstax.state.co.us/delinquent/index
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