Goes Into Hibernation
G.D. Bair has announced that November 27 will be
his final day with the department. "Bair," as
he is affectionately known, has served his entire
career of 37 years with the State of Iowa and the
Department of Revenue, 27 years as director. During
his tenure, he has seen many changes, from typewriters
and punch cards to computers and mainframes and
now the Internet and World Wide Web.
Bair is currently the longest-serving
director of a state tax department. He is active with the
MSATA, NTA, FTA, NASACT and NASC national organizations.
Locally, he is a member and past president of the Ankeny
Iowa Rotary, a member of ASPA and IAAO and serves on other
state and local boards and committees.
Bair says, "I have been fortunate to work my entire
professional career for one employer, the taxpayers of
Iowa. I now look forward to spending time with my family
and 'grand-Bairs.' Beyond that, who knows."
Thank you, Bair, for your guidance
and friendship over the years.
Announces Effort to Reduce Paperwork for Small Businesses
Beginning in early October, more
than 28,000 letters are being mailed to Iowa withholding
agents informing them their filing frequencies are changing
January 1, 2003. Letters will not be sent to those whose
filing frequencies will not change. This represents 45 percent
of all Iowa withholding agents. Of those changing, about
90 percent will file less frequently.
In addition, beginning in November,
similar letters will be sent to more than 30,000 sales tax
permit holders whose filing frequencies will change January
1. Again, letters will not be sent to those whose filing
frequencies will not change.
Why is this being done?
For two reasons:
- New legislation allows our department
to adjust the dollar amount levels that determine how
often returns and deposits should be filed. These levels
had not changed for many years. We adjusted them based
on inflation, tax rate changes, and other factors.
- We estimate this effort will
reduce paper documents that must be filed and processed
by 30 percent. This means that taxpayers will file approximately
500,000 fewer deposits and returns each year.
What taxes are affected?
- Iowa sales tax and Iowa withholding
- Not affected at this time:
Iowa retailers use tax and Iowa consumers use tax
How did the department determine
who would change and who would not?
We reviewed the amount of tax you remitted in 2001.
Based on those numbers, we assigned the appropriate filing
frequency according to the new dollar amount levels.
What are the new filing frequency
here to see the levels for both sales and withholding
taxes. The chart also gives a general idea of when and what
type of forms to file.
What if you don't want to
change your filing frequency?
- If we determined that you need
to file more often, you are required by law to do so.
- If it
was found you need to file less often, you may
request to remain in your current filing status
and continue to file more frequently than you need
to by law. See "Contact us" below.
However, if you want to continue to file more
often than you need to, you must make payments
by electronic funds transfer (EFT). This enables
our department to process less paper and reduce
Do you believe we changed
your frequency incorrectly?
If the amount(s) paid in 2001
are not consistent with the amount of tax you normally
remit, and you would like us to review your filing history
to determine if the change we made was appropriate, contact
Customer Accounts as explained below.
All requests must be made in
writing and sent by mail, fax, e-mail or through our online
you need further information about filing frequency changes?
added a new feature to our Web site:"Where's My Refund?" You
can now check the status of your refund via this new
service. All you need is to have your Social Security
Number and the amount of the refund requested.
An automated phone service is also
available. Call our Refund Status line at 1.800.572.3944
(Iowa only) or 515.281.4966 and have your SSN and refund
Also, a reminder that if you sent
in a paper return, you must allow at least 12 weeks
for processing, and if there was an error on the return,
it will take even longer.
Your Iowa Income Tax Return!
For us, income tax season is right
around the corner. While others are thinking of sugar plum
fairies and candy canes, we are thinking IA 1040's and W-2's.
Soon, millions of returns will be coming into our office.
Don't wait 12 weeks or more for
your Iowa income tax refund. E-File and receive your refund
in 2 weeks or less. E-File is available for zero balance
due, refund or balance due returns. E-File options available:
1) Federal/State electronic filing
through a tax professional
2) Federal/State electronic filing through purchased software
3) Federal/State electronic filing online
4) WebFile [Editor's Note: WebFile
is no longer an e-file option.]
5) TeleFile [Editor's Note: TeleFile
is no longer an e-file option, beginning with tax year
6) State only filing
WebFile require you to use the same filing status as
on the Iowa income tax return the prior year. These E-File
options are not for the first-time filer and do require
that you timely filed with us the year before. The WebFile
application does allow for change of address.
New for WebFile this year is the
alternate PIN# option. If you timely filed with us last
year, but didn't receive a PIN# in the mail or can't locate
it, you can access the PIN# we assigned to you directly
through the WebFile application. You will be required to
enter last year's filing status and the amount of refund/balance
due claimed on your Iowa income tax return. Once this shared
information is correctly provided, your PIN# will be shown
on the screen.
has been expanded considerably this year. This free Internet
filing option will be available for the following:
- married filing joint
- married filing separate on a
- head of household with qualifying
- individuals over age 65 and/or
- Social Security
- health insurance deduction
- pension exclusion
- Federal and state estimate
- limited itemized deductions
- tuition/textbook credit
- child/dependent care credit
State only filing is new for tax
year 2002. Some software companies may allow you to electronically
file just your Iowa income tax return. The direct deposit
refund option saves you time waiting on a paper check and
helps us by not printing and mailing a paper refund check.
Questions on E-Filing? Please contact
the Iowa Department of Revenue and Finance, Taxpayer
Services, by e-mail,
visit the IDR Web
site or call: 515-281-3114.
sale of ATV's to most consumers is taxable. It is fraudulent
for a company selling ATV's to tell customers to sign
an exemption certificate to avoid tax when the buyer
is not eligible for exemption. Penalties and/or criminal
charges could result for both the retailer and customer.
For more information on taxable sales visit our Tax
Bins and Tanks
Fall harvest is in full gear! Grain
bins that are permanently installed are subject to sales
tax. The buyer of the building materials is responsible
for paying sales tax or use tax on those materials. The
buyer is the person who pays the vendor. Questions? E-mail
Tax Holiday Held
If you have questions on how to
fill out your return to report non-taxable sales or if
you were incorrectly charged sales tax, visit our Sales
Tax Holiday Web page for information. Also, we typically
will not have an idea of "total savings" to Iowans
least sometime next spring, after all the annual
filers have sent in returns and we have time to compile
Iowa Local Option Tax Jurisdictions July 1...
last issue for more info.
comprehensive file we have on regular and school local
option taxes is an Excel file.
Sales Tax Return Mailings
We are still receiving calls on
this issue. This year the department changed its mailing
process. Instead of mailing quarterly and monthly deposits
four times each year, we are mailing them only twice each
year, two quarters of returns and deposits in one envelope.
These forms are preprinted with
your permit information. Please be sure to use the correct
preprinted form. For more information, check out our March
2002 Iowa Tax
eNews or e-mail us.
tax classes are being held NOW!
Professionals: Our classes qualify for continuing education
can subscribe to Iowa eLists !!
us spread the word! Five lists, customized for different
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[Editor's Note: Additional tax categories are available.]
Income Tax for tax professionals and others
Business Tax Sales, Use and Local Option tax
information for businesses and others
Iowa Tax e-News public newsletter
Tax for employers and others
Vehicle Fuel Tax, especially for permit holders
and Tobacco Tax, especially for permit holders
Note: This category is now available.]
Note: This category is now available.]