Paying the correct taxes

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Tuesday, May 6, 2014


EMPLOYEEES of dySS Super Radyo RGMA Cebu underwent three hours lecture yesterday by an accountant regarding tax deductions and payments. This is in keeping with the company's policy that employees receiving commissions, talent fees and other income outside the regular salary should properly declare these. Receipts should also be issued to clients so the employee’s tax obligations can be properly monitored.

SGMA Network and its subsidiaries are very religious in deducting taxes from its employees and in remitting the same to the Bureau of Internal Revenue (BIR). The management notes that we are in the media, so we should serve as role models in paying our tax obligations.

So now we look like establishments selling commodities. We have booklets of receipts and we issue receipts to our clients once we get our talent fees for endorsing a product or commissions from advertisements. Because we are registered with the BIR, we have to declare and report our other incomes to it on a regular basis.

Just imagine the hassle of printing receipts that cannot just be printed in a BIR-accredited printer without us complying with requirements like birth certificate of the employee and his/her descendants (from the National Statistics Office), marriage contract, mayor's permit, the professional fee (to be secured from the treasurer's office), Department of Trade and Industry (DTI) clearance and payment of P500 for new applicants.

We cannot get our talent fees if we don't have receipts, especially if the fee is channeled to our finance department in the national office. I can imagine the hassle of lining up at the BIR office or any authorized bank to pay three percent tax from your extra income (unless you hire an accountant or bookkeeper to do it for you).

This BIR policy has long existed but was strengthened during the incumbency of BIR Commissioner Kim Henares ostensibly to generate more taxes. This is the same policy imposed on medical practitioners, lawyers and other professionals.

Employees like me cannot escape this policy because our company is the one complying with it or else we cannot receive our talent fees and commissions. But what about those receiving professional fees? Can the BIR oblige or force them to declare their income? I doubt it.

In Cebu, only a handful of doctors and lawyers reportedly declared their proper incomes and paid their subsequent tax obligations. Only the hospital would issue a receipt. The doctor's fee is just reflected in the total itemized billing.

Sa mga abugado, kumoton ra man nang kuwarta sa kliyente dayon isulod sa bulsa sa abugado inighuman sa hearing. Usahay ang abugado hatagan lang og baboy sa iyang kliyente. Unya imong isyuhan og resibo ang baboy?

I have no problem paying my taxes to the BIR because that is our obligation as citizen and for as long as my contribution is spent well. I am even willing to give half of my salary to the government, but the government should also take care of my family’s medical and hospitalization needs and the education of my children. And after retirement, I should receive a big pension.

Our infrastructure, especially our roads, should also be in good condition. We should have a stable peace and order condition because our law enforcers are efficient.

But what we have now are contrary to these things. We are hearing anomalies involving taxpayers’ money like the P10 billion pork barrel scam involving some of our legislators. If you are an ordinary taxpayer, will you not feel bad?

I don't know how this massive graft and corruption incidents in our government bureaucracy can be curbed. There is this “matuwid na daan” campaign of the present administration but it is not working well. President Noynoy Aquino might be honest, but what about the people working with him?

“Straight path” is just a misnomer as there are Cabinet members who are suspected of being involved in shenanigans but PNoy unfortunately failed to discipline them. He is only good in running after political opposition members who are perceived to be corrupt.

God bless the Philippines.

(bobby.nalzaro@yahoo.com)

Published in the Sun.Star Cebu newspaper on May 07, 2014.

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