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State gives late taxpayers a break this year

It’s tax time again, and millions of people are finding themselves without the money to pay the government what they owe.

Due to the fact that so many people have been late paying their taxes, the Revenue Department will be temporarily waiving penalties and will not seek criminal prosecutions for delinquent taxes as long as taxpayers come forward and make their payments in full no later than May 15.

This break can allow people more time to come up with the proper amount of money they owe without having to face criminal penalties for paying delinquent or insufficient funds.

Gov. Bob Riley said, “There are some who are not paying what they owe. That isn’t fair to the millions of taxpayers who do. Those who are not paying what they owe are breaking the law.”

The effort to help taxpayers correct their payments is called Operation Clean Slate.

The operation will start Feb. 1 and last through May 15. During that time the usual penalties for failing to file returns or failing to pay the tax due will not be issued.

After March 15, the Revenue Department will be using a new computer that will allow them to keep up with taxpayers on a more accurate basis. This will give them a better idea of the people who are paying their taxes correctly and those who are not.

Anyone wanting to participate in Operation Clean Slate should send their delinquent or amended tax returns to the Department of Revenue at P.O. Box 327010, Montgomery, AL 36132-7010.