Thu., January 14, 2010 5:25pm (EST)

Revenue Commissioner Rejects Push For Drastic Overhaul
By Edgar Treiguts
Updated: 4 years ago

ATLANTA  —  
State revenue commissioner Bart Graham rejects calls for a drastic overhaul of his department.
State revenue commissioner Bart Graham rejects calls for a drastic overhaul of his department.
The state’s top revenue official says he’s confident by the end of the legislative session, Georgia lawmakers will find ways to help his department run more efficiently. But Department of Revenue Commissioner Bart Graham suggests a drastic overhaul is not needed.

With legislators charged with the task of cutting deeper into the state’s budget, every dollar counts. And a group of Democrats says the current structure of the Department of Revenue leaves hundreds of millions of dollars of sales taxes uncollected.

Graham says lawmakers calling for a major overhaul go too far. And he says some proposed options to take the place of state collection are not good ideas – such as ‘privatizing’ the work:

"More collectors will always collect more money, but if you go to that model, you’re going to leave your small businesses at the risk of being subject to scrutiny and audit by a private company motivated by how much money they collect."

Graham also says paperwork could increase for retailers if private, or local government tax collection methods are put into place.

Graham will give budget committee members an update on his department next week.