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Role of the Commissioner

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The role of the Commissioner

The central role of Commissioner of Inland Revenue requires independence in relation to the tax affairs of individual taxpayers, because this independence is critical in ensuring taxpayers receive impartial treatment.  The non-partisan administration of tax laws influences taxpayers to view the tax system as fair. 

The role of the Commissioner as a state sector chief executive requires her to be responsive to matters relating to the collective interests of government.  This includes the Government’s priority for an efficient public service.  Central to this cross-government strategy is the sharing of information, and using that information to support the delivery of services to New Zealanders. 

The existing framework, established by the State Sector Act, the Public Finance Act and the Tax Administration Act, recognises that the Commissioner’s role as an independent statutory officer will continue to complement her chief executive function.  The complementary nature of the roles is reflected in Inland Revenue’s responsibility to all New Zealanders to be efficient in the collection of revenue used to fund government programmes.  This includes developing a range of different working relationships with other organisations, including strategic partnerships, to deliver some services and support the wider government sector.

The discussion document “Towards a New Tax Administration Act” uses this framework to develop ideas about what needs to change in the legislation as we move towards modernising the tax administration system.

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