Tax Amnesty Legislation Passes the General Assembly

The Maryland Senate gave final approval to legislation Friday that would create a “Tax Amnesty” period for individuals and corporations who owe back taxes.  Those who come forward during the amnesty period, September 1 through October 30, 2015, would not be required to pay penalties and one-half of the interest due on taxes attributable to the nonpayment, nonreporting, or underreporting of income taxes, withholding taxes, sales and use taxes, or admissions and amusement taxes that are paid during the amnesty period.

Tax Amnesty periods have been enacted in the past during times of budget difficulties.  Those enacted in 1987, 2001, and 2009 have generated between $33 million and $40 million in additional revenues. Local governments benefit from back income taxes and admissions and amusement taxes paid.

According to the fiscal note, the amnesty period  would generate $11.4 million in State revenue and $3.1 million in local revenue for FY 2016.

The House crossfile will receive final approval this week.