The Statement of Expectations (SoE) framework forms part of the Victorian Government’s program to reduce red tape by promoting greater efficiency and effectiveness in the administration and enforcement of regulation.
On 17 June 2014, we received the SoE which set out targets that must be met by 30 June 2016.
By the end of 2015-16, we had met or exceeded all SoE targets. They are:
Reduce the number of land tax amendment requests as a proportion of total land tax assessments by 5 per cent
This target was achieved in the 2015 land tax cycle. We received 35,816 amendment requests against 325,299 assessments issued in the 2015 land tax cycle. This was a rate of 11.01 per cent. The published benchmark for this target was based on the 2013 land tax cycle, and the rate was 11.76 per cent. We have, therefore, reduced the rate of amendment requests to assessments by 6.4 per cent in 2015 compared to 2013 [(11.767% - 11.010%) divided by 11.767%].
Reduce processing time by 21 days for three types of duties transactions:
- Late duties lodgements,
- Unrelated sub-sale with off-the-plan concessions, and
- Transfer to super fund exemption
In 2014-15, we expanded our Duties Online system to enable each of these transactions to be processed in real time. As a result, we have successfully met this target, as processing times for these transactions have been reduced by 21 days.
Improve the task completion score for the SRO website to 2.1
The published benchmark of 2.2 for this target was based on a usability study commissioned in 2013. In June 2015, we launched our new website with easier searching, enhanced content and improved navigation and design. Website user testing on this new website was commissioned in April 2016 which delivered a task completion score of 1.4, where lower is better. We have therefore easily exceeded this target.
We enhanced our Duties Online system on 1 December 2014 to enable registered users to reset their passwords online. This has reduced red tape for users as they no longer have to call us to reset their password. In 2015-16, out of a total of 5650 password resets, 4916 or 87 per cent were completed online.
Ongoing targets and improvements
Continue to use appropriate forums to advocate for payroll tax harmonisation (including legislative harmony and administrative consistency) across all Australian states and territories
Last year, we continued our commitment to reducing red tape through payroll tax harmonisation by working with the other state and territory revenue offices to:
- Deliver harmonised policy and legislation outcomes, through the Tax Law Committee and the Payroll Tax Harmonisation Revenue Rulings Sub-Committee,
- Promote administrative consistency, through participating in the Commissioners’ Business Practices Committee, and consulting with other jurisdictions on a total of 22 private rulings and objections where the customer had payroll tax obligations in other jurisdictions,
- Contribute to consistent outcomes in payroll tax audits, through teleconferences and the annual Compliance Conference, and
- Deliver harmonised customer education initiatives through the Interjurisdictional Training and Customer Education Committee. This included running 37 webinars in conjunction with the other revenue offices
Continue to monitor public awareness and understanding of taxation administration and delivery timely, accurate and accessible information and advice to taxpayers
Last year, we demonstrated our commitment to providing high-quality, timely information and advice based on customers’ needs and expectations, making it easy for taxpayers to comply by:
- Releasing a new, easy-to-use website with updated content and a vastly improved search function,
- Writing to recipients of the principal place of residence duty concession prior to the expiration of the 12-month requisite residency period to remind them of their obligations,
- Writing to land taxpayers whom we have identified to have a potential land tax absentee owner surcharge liability to inform of their potential liability and request that they respond to confirm their circumstances,
- Addressing frequently asked questions dynamically through videos on our website,
- Reviewing and re-writing land tax assessment notices and related communication materials for the 2016 land tax cycle to ensure that they clearly explain the obligations of our customers,
- Delivering 178 webinars (including 37 harmonised webinars), and leading 36 discussion groups for peak bodies, benefiting a total of 5259 participants, and
- Conducting significant stakeholder liaisons for the Back to Work Scheme
In his Statement of Expectations 2016-17, the Treasurer has also requested that we report on our current baseline performance levels as at 30 June 2016, which are:
- The Duties Online refund process was a manual one, and
- Total customers registered to receive land tax assessments electronically is 2141