Palace Forms Task Force to Go after Real Estate Tax Cheats

Article excerpt

Byline: FERDIE J. MAGLALANG

Malacanang announced yesterday the creation of an interagency council that will investigate and prosecute government and private individuals or firms who cheat on taxes on transfer of real estate titles.

President Arroyo witnessed the formal signing of the agreement in a simple ceremony at Malacanang yesterday to coordinate the government's efforts to exact proper payment of taxes on transfer of land titles.

Under the two-page agreement, the interagency council shall be headed and represented by the Department of Justice (DoJ), Office of the Ombudsman, and the Commission on Audit (CoA).

"There is a need to consolidate the efforts of all the concerned agencies in order to enhance the success of the effort to eradicate graft and corruption, to ensure the proper payment of taxes in the transfer of titles of real property," the agreement stated.

The agreement also directed the three government agencies to exact proper payment of taxes on transfer of titles of real property such as capital gains tax, documentary stamp, and other real estate taxes.

Specifically, the DoJ and its attached agencies are mandated to conduct fact-finding investigation, gather intelligence informations on anomalous transfer of titles of real estates, and share these with the CoA and Ombudsman.

For its part, the Ombudsman will "investigate and prosecute the cases falling under its jurisdiction. …