Statement of Expectations for the State Revenue Office
I am pleased to provide you with this Statement of Expectations (SOE) for the State Revenue Office (SRO). This SOE applies for the period 1 July 2018 to 30 June 2019, or until otherwise amended. It replaces the previous SOE that was in place for 2017-18.
Improving the administration and enforcement of regulation
This SOE sets out my expectations of the SRO’s contribution to the Government’s Regulation Reform Program to reduce red tape and improve regulatory practices.
This SOE outlines key governance and performance objectives and targets aimed at promoting greater efficiency and effectiveness in the administration and enforcement of regulation and thus reducing its cost impact on businesses, not-for-profit organisations, government service providers and households.
As the Treasurer, I am responsible for administering the Duties Act 2000, Land Tax Act 2005, Payroll Tax Act 2007, Congestion Levy Act 2005, First Home Owner Grant Act 2000, Taxation Administration Act 1997, Back to Work Act 2015, Growth Areas Infrastructure Contribution, Metropolitan Planning Levy, and several other grants and subsidies that affect businesses and the broader Victorian community. This SOE should be read within the context of the objectives, obligations and functions outlined in these Acts.
Improvements and targets
Based on consultation between the Department of Treasury and Finance and the SRO, I have identified key areas of governance and operational performance where there are opportunities for the SRO to make improvements that would reduce cost impacts on business. The SRO is expected to identify activities it will undertake to achieve the following performance improvements and targets by 30 June 2019, namely:
- Amend acknowledgement letters where an SRO action is being taken to ensure an expected timeframe is provided.
- Develop and launch a land tax portal where customers will be able to, amongst other things, update their details, track outstanding liabilities, request amendments and lodge objections.
- Reassess work practices to ensure 80% or more of private rulings are determined within 80 days (instead of the current 90 days).
- Introduce a system change to assist taxpayers comply with their tax obligations by recording the reasons for non-compliance to inform the structuring of more effective customer education campaigns.
In developing actions to achieve these improvements and targets, the SRO is expected to consult with business and the broader community as appropriate.
Reporting on your progress to achieve these SOE performance targets should be undertaken in the context of annual financial reporting to avoid dual reporting streams. As part of annual reporting, regulators are expected to report on:
- baseline levels for performance targets set in this SOE; and
- activities undertaken to reach the performance targets and improvements set out in this SOE.
I also expect that these SOE performance targets will be incorporated into the SRO’s Corporate Plan, and this SOE should be published on the SRO’s website upon receipt. Your response to this letter should also be published on the SRO’s website.
I look forward to seeing the SRO continuously working towards achieving best practice in the administration and enforcement of regulation.
Tim Pallas MP
28 June 2018
2018-19 Statement of Expectations for the State Revenue Office - Action Plan
As part of the Victorian Government’s red tape reduction program, the Honourable Tim Pallas MP has set out his Statement of Expectations for the State Revenue Office to improve its administrative practices.
The State Revenue Office administers Victoria's taxation legislation, collecting a range of taxes, duties and levies, and managing a range of grants. In 2017-18, we collected in excess of $18.5 billion in revenue for the Victorian Government.
It is our mission to provide customers with quality revenue management services that are fair, efficient and deliver benefits for all Victorians. We are committed to continuous improvement and reducing regulatory burden on those we serve, whether they be businesses, organisations or individuals.
As part of our focus on continuously improving customer experience, we are finding new and innovative ways to deliver services via our digital transformation program. This program is helping us to meet increasing expectations by customers that they can interact with us at a time and place that suits them.
As such, we are dedicated to achieving the targets set out in the Statement of Expectations and have detailed our plan for meeting each target below.
Amend acknowledgement letters where an SRO action is being taken to ensure an expected timeframe is provided.
To improve customer experience, we will be advising customers of the timeframe within which they can expect resolution of their matter, for example the determination of their request for a private ruling. We are reviewing all acknowledgement letters to ensure they include expected timeframes for what we are promising our customers. Standards applying to all our actions will be communicated to staff to support them in determining completion timeframes.
Develop and launch a land tax portal where customers will be able to, among other things, update their details, track outstanding liabilities, request amendments and lodge objections.
Digital transformation is a core component of our corporate strategy, which has a primary focus on modernising the way we interact with our land tax customers, one of our largest customer cohorts. In 2018-19, we are developing a land tax portal to accommodate the growing demand from customers for self-service.
We are using customer centric design principles for the land tax portal so it is easy and intuitive to use. User experience testing will ensure customer feedback is incorporated into its design. Carefully planned communication will also form part of our change management strategies when we launch the land tax portal to our customers.
Reassess work practices to ensure 80% or more of private rulings are determined within 80 days (instead of the current 90 days).
We are committed to improving the timeliness of our services and are aiming to respond to 80% or more of all private ruling requests within 80 days rather than within the current 90-day response target.
Internal work practices are being reviewed to ensure that processes are streamlined and areas for improved efficiency are identified so that we can meet this new target.
Introduce a system change to assist taxpayers comply with their tax obligations by recording the reasons for non-compliance to inform the structuring of more effective customer education campaigns.
We share expert tax knowledge via a wide range of educational initiatives to help customers better understand state taxes, duties and grants. We are continually striving to improve compliance-related assistance and advice by tailoring communication and customer education activities to meet the specific needs of tax professionals, businesses and the general public.
To ensure our customer education is relevant to our many audiences, we are introducing a system to better capture the reasons why customers fail to comply with their tax obligations. This will help us focus on areas of taxation law which are commonly misunderstood and require more promotion, explanation and education.
The information we gather will help us enhance our website content and better tailor customer education activities to ensure we are addressing areas of taxation law that will provide the most assistance to our customers.
In our 2017-18 Annual Review, we will report on the baseline levels for the performance targets set out in this Statement of Expectations as well as our activities for achieving these targets.
We have incorporated the above activities in our 2018-19 Business Plan and will report on how we have met our targets in our 2018-19 Annual Review.
I look forward to continuing to work towards achieving best practice in administering and enforcing Victoria’s taxation legislation for the benefit of all Victorians.
Paul Broderick PSM
Commissioner of State Revenue