Gov. Susana Martinez
SANTA FE – Gov. Susana Martinez announced that New Mexico has been recognized by the Council On State Taxation (COST), a national nonpartisan taxpayer watchdog group, for a dramatic improvement in state tax administration.
The group has upgraded New Mexico’s rating from a D to a B after the state adopted several reforms to simplify the tax code, making it fairer and more user-friendly. COST monitors and rates every state on tax appeal processes and administrative practices based on fairness of tax laws and regulations for tax administration.
“This new rating from a national, nonpartisan taxpayer watchdog group sends a strong message that New Mexico is working to serve taxpayers more effectively and efficiently,” Martinez said.
COST cited critical tax reforms: “New Mexico rose from a D to a B by adopting several reforms, including, importantly, extending the time period to protest an assessment from 30 to 90 days,” as well as, “recommendations regarding the State’s requirements to report federal tax changes and the ability to claim a refund resulting from such changes.”
House Bill 299, which Martinez signed into law earlier this year, simplified New Mexico’s tax rules and procedures for individuals, families, and businesses. These reforms include extending deadlines for taxpayers filing amended returns as a result of Internal Revenue Service (IRS) action from 90 days to 180; setting the maximum filing extension at 12 months; increases the protest filing period from 30 days to 90 days, and makes other procedural changes.
In addition, New Mexico has seen the number of tax protests decline steadily since Martinez took office, dropping from 1,169 in January 2011 to 313 in December 2013.
The Council on State Taxation is a national nonprofit, nonpartisan taxpayer watchdog group that works to preserve and promote equitable and nondiscriminatory tax policies and procedures in state governments across the country.
The New Mexico Taxation and Revenue Department (TRD) has also made important strides in improving tax fairness and preventing waste, fraud, and abuse. Since the beginning of 2012, the department has stopped 5,830 potentially fraudulent tax returns from being processed, saving taxpayers more than $11 million. Earlier this year, Martinez also signed groundbreaking tax reform legislation, leveling the playing field for New Mexico’s businesses to make the state’s economy more competitive.