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MCRS steps up new plans to reach revenue target for March 2012

Mr. Frank Ferguson

The new Director General (DG) of MCRS (Montserrat Customs & Revenue Services) has promised new methods of revenue collecting that will see Government of Montserrat (GoM) complete its revenue collection goal for the financial year ending March 2012.

Mr. Frank Ferguson is the new DG and he is highlighting non-compliance by tax payers as an inhibition to the collection of taxes.

According to a press release by GIU (Government Information Unit) the MCRS was to launch a mobile task force beginning Tuesday, February 7, 2012. MCRS DG  said the task force, comprising of Customs officers and Inland Revenue staff would begin patrolling the island immediately with the focus on people who have been “non-compliant or are operating businesses outside of the system”.

The release quoted Ferguson as reassuring the “ordinary citizens” that they have nothing to fear. “We are not targeting those that are paying, but those that have been persistently abusing the system”

The release was quoting from an interview with Ferguson by the GIU (Government Information Unit). “It is not popular but very necessary,” Ferguson said, adding: “To date, MCRS has made 90% of its annual revenue collection target and Ferguson hopes that the introduction of the mobile team will enable them to reach their goal by the end of the financial year in March 2012.”

The release also informed that Ferguson has also begun work to review the laws governing tax evasion as there has not been a case brought against anyone in over 40 years. He said there needs to be more legal sanctions to ensure that the government is able to collect what is owed. The director general has already signed a memorandum of understanding with the Royal Montserrat Police Service (RMPS) to work on cases together and offer law enforcement support where necessary.

Governor endorses Premier’s promise to prosecute delinquent tax payers

Meanwhile, H E Governor Davis was asked to comment on the new approach unveiled by the MCRS at a brief press conference on Tuesday this week. He said he fully supports the Director’s initiative. “I think it is very good that Mr. Ferguson is on the island,” he said. “I have met him several time and he seems to be pretty dynamic, innovative and interested in pursuing his job and he sees that the collection of taxes, the collection of revenue that is owed to the government as a very important part of that job.”

The said also, “I am sure the Premier does too, and also endorse this approach.”  The noted that the Premier has made it clear that it is government’s police to prosecute people who consistently refuse to pay their taxes.

“I know it is true that we haven’t taken anyone to court. I hope we will be soon taking someone to court, that is the Government’s policy if they don’t comply,” he confirmed, pointing out Government’s new policy, which is he says, “It is also important that we now have this policy where you cannot work for the government, you cannot be a contractor and work for the government unless you  can produce an income tax compliance certificate.”

The Governor sees the policy as, “also encouraging people to start  obey the rules and pay the tax that is due to the government.”

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A Moment with the Registrar of Lands

Mr. Frank Ferguson

The new Director General (DG) of MCRS (Montserrat Customs & Revenue Services) has promised new methods of revenue collecting that will see Government of Montserrat (GoM) complete its revenue collection goal for the financial year ending March 2012.

Mr. Frank Ferguson is the new DG and he is highlighting non-compliance by tax payers as an inhibition to the collection of taxes.

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According to a press release by GIU (Government Information Unit) the MCRS was to launch a mobile task force beginning Tuesday, February 7, 2012. MCRS DG  said the task force, comprising of Customs officers and Inland Revenue staff would begin patrolling the island immediately with the focus on people who have been “non-compliant or are operating businesses outside of the system”.

The release quoted Ferguson as reassuring the “ordinary citizens” that they have nothing to fear. “We are not targeting those that are paying, but those that have been persistently abusing the system”

The release was quoting from an interview with Ferguson by the GIU (Government Information Unit). “It is not popular but very necessary,” Ferguson said, adding: “To date, MCRS has made 90% of its annual revenue collection target and Ferguson hopes that the introduction of the mobile team will enable them to reach their goal by the end of the financial year in March 2012.”

The release also informed that Ferguson has also begun work to review the laws governing tax evasion as there has not been a case brought against anyone in over 40 years. He said there needs to be more legal sanctions to ensure that the government is able to collect what is owed. The director general has already signed a memorandum of understanding with the Royal Montserrat Police Service (RMPS) to work on cases together and offer law enforcement support where necessary.

Governor endorses Premier’s promise to prosecute delinquent tax payers

Meanwhile, H E Governor Davis was asked to comment on the new approach unveiled by the MCRS at a brief press conference on Tuesday this week. He said he fully supports the Director’s initiative. “I think it is very good that Mr. Ferguson is on the island,” he said. “I have met him several time and he seems to be pretty dynamic, innovative and interested in pursuing his job and he sees that the collection of taxes, the collection of revenue that is owed to the government as a very important part of that job.”

The said also, “I am sure the Premier does too, and also endorse this approach.”  The noted that the Premier has made it clear that it is government’s police to prosecute people who consistently refuse to pay their taxes.

“I know it is true that we haven’t taken anyone to court. I hope we will be soon taking someone to court, that is the Government’s policy if they don’t comply,” he confirmed, pointing out Government’s new policy, which is he says, “It is also important that we now have this policy where you cannot work for the government, you cannot be a contractor and work for the government unless you  can produce an income tax compliance certificate.”

The Governor sees the policy as, “also encouraging people to start  obey the rules and pay the tax that is due to the government.”