FOLLOWING the decade anniversary since the merger between the Inland Revenue and HM Customs and Excise to create HMRC took effect on 18 April 2005, the verdict on the enlarged department’s relative success or failure lies somewhere in between.
A poll of 73 Accountancy Age readers found that around a third felt the project had been a failure because the department is in the lap of the corporate world, providing decreasing levels of service for ordinary taxpayers while spending billions on white elephant IT projects.
And while only 17% said HMRC had successfully transitioned to new digital channels, cracked down on tax avoidance and gained new powers, the majority of respondents felt the taxman had been held back by resource cuts.
Around half said resource cuts had hamstrung its ability to deliver an adequate service, a view that mirrors comments made by former PAC chair Margaret Hodge to sister title Financal Director.
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