NAO says 5.7 million people paid the wrong tax

One in ten people are paying the wrong tax, according to the
National Audit

The NAO has highlighted that 5.7 million people have not paid the right tax,
with HM Revenue & Customs estimating that £1bn of tax was underpaid and
£500m overpaid, due to problems operating the PAYE system.

has responded by reminding staff of the importance of following
procedures, improving its internal quality monitoring procedures and has
introduced a programme to deliver a better service experience for the taxpayer,’
the NAO stated. ‘It has also allocated additional resources to PAYE work. But it
recognises that real improvement requires fundamental changes.’

The details came out of an NAO report into the accuracy and quality of
presentation of government annual reports.

NAO comptroller and auditor general Sir John Bourn had to qualify seven out
of 54 sets of departmental resource accounts for 2005/2006, compared with two
the year before.

Sir John issued qualified opinions on seven of the 54 resource accounts: Home
Office, Department for Work & Pensions, the Assets Recovery Agency, Armed
Forces Pension Scheme, House of Commons members account, NHS Pension scheme, and
the Revenue & Customs Prosecution office.

Despite the increase in qualifications, Sir John praised an improvement in
the timeliness of reporting, with 87% of departments submitting their accounts
for audit on time, compared with 51% a year earlier.

Sir John said: ‘This year I have been impressed with the improvement in
timeliness of government accounts submitted for audit, and I believe that the
steps taken by the Treasury and departments to improve their financial
management are delivering benefits.

‘A few departments still have some way to go in providing high-quality
accounts on a timely basis, but this should not overshadow the significant
improvement achieved by the majority. For departments to be able to plan
effectively and make informed decisions, their financial information must be
robust and complete.’

Further reading:

NAO questions government’s savings

NAO: Better public involvement needed at NHS

NAO to probe salaries at BBC

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