Six people from a variety of backgrounds will give New Zealanders a voice in simplifying, modernising and transforming the way tax is paid.
Commissioner of Inland Revenue Naomi Ferguson has welcomed the appointment of five new members to Inland Revenue's Taxpayers Simplification Panel, to be chaired by Henri Eliot.
She said it was exciting to have such a wide range of knowledge and experience on-board to help make tax easier for all New Zealanders.
"We have had a great response to our idea of setting up the panel and to the panellists we have selected," she said. "All of them have fantastic skills and will be able to offer and contribute a great deal. Those selected range from successful businesses owners to representing the needs and interests of varied communities.
"The panellists will now engage with all of our customers and small businesses on how we can best reduce the amount of time spent on red-tape and tax compliance," said Ms Ferguson.
To be selected the panellists had to meet criteria including, their experience in setting up and operating small to medium size businesses, knowledge of web and digital design and their access to the views of the wider community.
Inland Revenue is keen to work with everyday New Zealanders and talk to people who might not have been heavily involved in the tax debate up to now," said Ms Ferguson. "We already engage with a variety of interest groups, we listen to their views and so we are familiar with their positions. This panel is about giving a voice to those who have yet to be heard.
"Everything we are doing is about simplifying tax so it is quicker and easier for everyone. Our campaigns and the Taxpayers Simplification Panel are all ways in which New Zealanders can have their say about our tax system as Inland Revenue becomes a world class revenue authority.
"I encourage anyone who wishes to share their ideas about how we can make tax simpler to email Inland Revenue's Taxpayers Simplification Panel at firstname.lastname@example.org," she said.
The first meeting of Inland Revenue's Taxpayers Simplification Panel will be held on 22 August 2014 and will consider the 1,500 responses Inland Revenue received for its recent Save Time campaign. This initiative asked individuals and small business owners in the Hawkes Bay to rate six ideas which would make dealing with their tax affairs faster and easier.