The Department of Revenue and Taxation reported a decrease in Section 30 audited revenues in tax year 2015, according to the recent Citizen-Centric Report filed by the department.
Section 30 funds refers to federal income taxes derived from active members of the armed forces and pensions paid to retired civilian and military employees of the United States who reside on Guam. These funds are appropriated to support the operations, activities and programs of the local government.
According to the report, Section 30 revenues reached $96.1 million in tax year 2013. This was reduced to $87.9 million in tax year 2014, and $71.4 million in tax year 2015.
Business privilege taxes
Business privilege taxes also saw a decrease over the past three years. According to DRT, business privilege taxes reached $221.6 million in tax year 2013, then increased to $238.2 million in tax year 2014. In tax year 2015, BPT was reduced to $226.5 million.
Meanwhile, hotel occupancy tax, real property tax and income tax revenues saw an increase during the past three years. Hotel occupancy tax figures in tax year 2013 reached $29.3 million, which increased by approximately $5 million in tax year 2014 to $34.3 million. This increased to $36.9 million in tax year 2015.
Real property tax also increased from $21.26 million in tax year 2013, $23.26 million in tax year 2014, and $28.03 million in tax year 2015. Income tax collections also increased from $261.9 million in tax year 2013, $296.2 million in tax year 2014, to $324.4 million in tax year 2015.
DRT reported revenue collections of $731.7 million in tax year 2015, which is $2 million less than tax year 2014 figures.
In fiscal year 2015, DRT reported several accomplishments including the completion of a real property tax revaluation project; restoration of online renewal of vehicle registrations, business licenses and driver’s license scheduler; and creation of the Business License Tax Compliance Task Force in March 2015.
In terms of future outlook, DRT outlined plans to become Real ID compliant so that holders of a Guam driver’s license and identification card can be federally accepted for official purposes; to upgrade and enhance computer systems for efficient delivery of services; to install computer kiosks for taxpayers who wish to take advantage of electronic service while visiting the department; and to work with the Department of Administration in establishing a unified accounting system.
The Office of Public Accountability mandates that the government submit a Citizen-Centric Report in accordance with Public Law 30-127. According to the act, the report shall be submitted to the OPA and the speaker of the Guam Legislature no later than 60 days after the release of an independent audit report for the government of Guam for each fiscal year. The rule covers line agencies, autonomous and semi-autonomous agencies, public corporations, the Mayors’ Council of Guam, the Judiciary of Guam and the Guam Legislature.