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​June 21, 2011

 

Contingency planning for potential state shutdown effective July 1

The Minnesota Legislature adjourned on May 23, 2011, without reaching an agreement on budget appropriations to fund operations of state government. Unless money is appropriated, there is no authority for most state agencies, including the Department of Revenue, to continue non-critical services beyond June 30.

The courts have been asked to issue an order that would continue funding of certain critical services of state government. Governor Mark Dayton has filed papers with Ramsey County District Court recommending that limited Department of Revenue payment processing be defined as critical services.
 
The information contained in this newsletter assumes the governor’s recommendation will be adopted if there is a shutdown. Please note, however, that the final determination will be made by the courts.
 

What this means for you and your clients:

In the event of a shutdown, beginning July 1 and throughout the duration of the shutdown, taxpayers and preparers should be aware of the following:
 
  • Requirements to file and pay remain intact. Taxpayers must continue to file tax returns and pay tax by the lawful due dates. Returns electronically filed or postmarked on or before the due date will be considered timely. The department will continue to process payments it receives (both electronically and by check) and deposit funds into the state’s bank. After the shutdown ends, the department will process returns and assess any applicable penalties and interest.
  • The department website, including applications to file and pay, register and/or update business information, should be operational. If applications are not operational due to the shutdown, taxpayers who are required to electronically file and/or pay should file on paper and/or pay by check.
  • No refunds will be issued. Because the department will not process any returns, no refunds will be issued. In addition, property tax refunds will not be issued to renters and homeowners who have already filed a Property Tax Refund Return.
  • No services will be available. All department locations will be closed to the public and no services will be available, including those by phone or email.
  • Lists of liquor tax delinquencies and revoked sales tax permits will not be updated. Daily updates of tax delinquencies for liquor, wine and beer sales and monthly updates of revoked sales tax permits will not be made. What this means: A business who may have fully paid its tax delinquencies during the shutdown will continue to be on the list. Conversely, a business who wasn’t on the list prior to the shutdown but since then should be, will not be placed on the list until after the shutdown ends.
We will be posting FAQs in the coming weeks to help address taxpayer and preparer concerns related to the shutdown. Continue to check our website or https://www.bereadymn.com for updates.
 
We hope an agreement will be reached in time to avoid a shutdown. Your patience is appreciated as this process unfolds. Rest assured we will pass along additional information as it becomes available.