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Few attend IN Dept of Revenue annual meeting

The Indiana Department of Revenue held its annual public hearing Tuesday, a chance for Hoosier citizens to voice complaints and make suggestions about ways the Department can improve.  However, the meeting was sparsely attended.

Of the dozen or so people who showed up, almost all worked for the Department of Revenue.  And only one person got up to speak.

Jeff McGowan is a CPA with accounting firm Kruggel Lawton in South Bend and a representative of the Indiana CPA Society. He made several suggestions, including asking the department to expand the state’s electronic filing capabilities and provide reasons to taxpayers why a refund is being delayed, rather than just informing them of a hold.

McGowan says he’s puzzled by the lack of attendance at the meetings each year.

“Gives us a chance to voice some of our concerns in what we’re seeing and then what I have found in the past is that they do take what we’ve said to heart.”

Department of Revenue Commissioner Mike Alley says he’ll consider holding public hearings around the state as a way to generate more response.

“We do get out and interact through our district offices with taxpayers throughout the state but to take the show on the road might not be a bad idea.”

McGowan agrees, because he thinks some people are deterred from attending by the prospect of having to travel to Indianapolis.

“If they would do it in, perhaps, a southern location and a northern one as well I think that might be helpful.”

The department is required by state statute to hold at least one public hearing each year prior to July first.

Brandon Smith is excited to be working for public radio in Indiana. He has previously worked in public radio as a reporter and anchor in mid-Missouri for KBIA Radio out of Columbia. Prior to that, he worked for WSPY Radio in Plano, Illinois as a show host, reporter, producer and anchor. His first job in radio was in another state capitol, in Jefferson City, Missouri, as a reporter for three radio stations around Missouri. Brandon graduated from the University of Missouri-Columbia with a Bachelor of Journalism in 2010, with minors in political science and history. He was born and raised in Chicago.