BEFORE THE UTAH STATE TAX COMMISSION
In Re: )
: FINDINGS OF FACT,
XXXXX, ) CONCLUSIONS OF LAW,
: AND FINAL DECISION
: Appeal No. 92-1886
: Account No. XXXXX
STATEMENT OF CASE
This matter came before the Utah State Tax Commission for a formal hearing on XXXXX. Lisa L. Olpin, Presiding Officer, heard the matter for and on behalf of the Commission. XXXXX, president, represented Petitioner by telephone.
Based upon the evidence and testimony presented at the hearing, the Tax Commission hereby makes its:
FINDINGS OF FACT
1. The tax in question is sales and use tax.
2. The quarters in question are the last three quarters of XXXXX, the first and last quarter of XXXXX and the third quarter of XXXXX.
3. Petitioner is requesting a waiver of the penalty and interest assessments on the quarters in question on the grounds of hardship.
4. XXXXX, president of XXXXX XXXXX, recalls when this account first went to collections in XXXXX and a field collector was assigned. Mr. XXXXX tried to make scheduled payments on a regular basis.
5. During the collection period, different collectors would be assigned to Petitioner and Mr. XXXXX would ask for an accounting of the total payments to date. He believes that his account was not properly credited at times.
6. Petitioner's account history shows that credit adjustments were made to rectify past errors.
7. Petitioner's account also shows three bounced checks over the period in question. Mr. XXXXX contends that one check bounced because the collector deposited it even though Mr. XXXXX requested him to hold it awhile longer.
8. Mr. XXXXX explained that Petitioner was late in paying sales tax due to tight finances. At one point, he purchased a new gas station only to find that the gas tank was leaking, costing Petitioner $$$$$.
9. Also, Mr. XXXXX experienced major medical bills when his wife had a high risk pregnancy in XXXXX, causing further financial difficulty. The loss of a child complicated matters.
10. At different times, Petitioner's creditors pursued Petitioner in bankruptcy proceedings.
11. Mr. XXXXX claims that field collectors misrepresented to him how his account would be credited and whether or not penalties and interest would be waived. He also understood that his account was current only to learn later that more taxes were due.
12. Mr. XXXXX contends that there is a possibility that his initial waiver request of these quarters was not given a fair review because a former field collector on Petitioner's account worked in the Tax Commission waiver unit. Mr. XXXXX and this field collector did not get along.
13. In summary, Petitioner is requesting at least a reduction of some amount in its penalty and interest assessments.
CONCLUSIONS OF LAW
The Tax Commission is granted the authority to waive, reduce, or compromise penalties and interest upon a showing of reasonable cause. (Utah Code Ann. §59-1-401(8).)
DECISION AND ORDER
This is a case where Petitioner elected to use sales and use tax money to help it through difficult financial times. Clearly, sales and use tax is not to be diverted for this purpose.
Petitioner's account had been corrected previously to assure payments were properly credited.
Based upon the foregoing, the Tax Commission finds that sufficient cause has not been shown which would justify a waiver or reduction of the penalty and interest assessments on the quarters in question. It is so ordered.
DATED this 10th day of June, 1993.
BY ORDER OF THE UTAH STATE TAX COMMISSION.
R. H. Hansen Roger O. Tew
Joe B. Pacheco S. Blaine Willes