New program helps Hoosiers who have unpaid taxes prior to 2013

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INDIANAPOLIS, Ind. (Sept. 15, 2015)– The Indiana Department of Revenue launched a program Tuesday to help Hoosiers who owe past-due taxes.

The tax amnesty 2015 program allows taxpayers to pay any unpaid taxes prior to 2013 without having to worry about penalties, interest or collection fees. More than 260,000 taxpayers are eligible for this program.

“It’s a great program for taxpayers (and) a great program for the state,” said Indiana Department of Revenue commissioner Andrew Kossack.

Last time the state did this- in 2005- it raised more than $200 million for various state projects.

So where will the money go this time?

The first $84 million would go to the new regional cities initiative, an idea the governor proposed to help Indiana’s cities attract talent.

“These are significant visionary proposals that are going to turn regions of the state into places where talent wants to work,” said IEDC president Jim Schellinger. “We’re good at attracting business, now we want to attract talent.”

After they’ve collected $84 million in back taxes, the next $6 million would go to INDOT to help pay for the Hoosier State rail line, a service that’s nearly been cut in recent years.

Rail enthusiasts hope this program will really raise the money they’re expecting.

“There’s always the possibility the tax amnesty program will fall short,” said Doug Yerkeson with the Indiana Passenger Rail Alliance. “We are optimistic the budget projections are realistic for this tax amnesty program and that it will raise the funds necessary.”

“We’re cautiously optimistic,” said Kossack. “But ultimately it’s up to taxpayers whether it makes sense for them to participate in the program or not.”

The Department of Revenue will send letters notifying people of their eligibility and outlines the program, which runs for the next two months.

Find more information about the program here.

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