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Monday, December 5, 2011 - 1:01pm

Tax Tribunal Idea Returns

State lawmakers are looking into setting up a tribunal to arbitrate tax disputes between the state department of revenue and taxpayers.

The special tax council appointed by former Governor Sonny Perdue recommended the tribunal in January.

Macon Republican Rep. Allen Peake says the tribunal would be more user-friendly than the current process, and would have a unique focus.

“You may have complex tax issues that are going before some judges who may have an expertise in that particular area," he said. "So if you set up a tribunal with one judge with an expertise in tax issues, it makes the whole process more efficient and more predictable for businesses.”

Peake says the Governor would appoint the judge, and the tribunal would fall under the executive branch, instead of the judicial branch.

Taxpayers would still be able to appeal a decision by the tribunal.

Peake says lawmakers plan to propose a law setting up with tribunal for the upcoming legislative session. It begins on Jan. 9.