Tax Amnesty Bill Passes the House

On Wednesday, the Ohio House of Representatives unanimously passed House Bill 609. HB 609 creates a three-month tax amnesty program that runs from Jan. 1, 2021 to March 31, 2021. During that three-month period taxpayers can pay delinquent taxes and fees without interest or penalties. The qualifying taxes must be due and payable as of the bill’s effective date and the underreported or unreported taxes must be paid in full to qualify for the waiver of interest and penalty.

Additionally, if a taxpayer has received a notice of audit or notice of assessment for delinquent taxes, those taxes are excluded from this amnesty program. There are 18 state taxes and fees administered by the Ohio Department of Taxation that qualify for the program. Included in the list is underreported or unreported state income tax withholding remittances. Local taxes, school district income taxes and transit authority taxes are not covered by the amnesty program. This will be the fifth amnesty program since 2000 and, like the previous programs, the goal is to discover additional revenues unknown or undetected by the state of Ohio. The funds raised will be placed in the budget stabilization (rainy day) fund, and a formula will be used to place a portion of the funds into the local government fund and the public library fund. If passed by the Ohio Senate and signed by the governor, the Ohio Department of Taxation will use the time between now and January to set up the program and publicize the amnesty program to maximize participation.