The Ministry of Finance is seeking public feedback on three proposed legislative amendments under the draft Property Tax (Amendment) Bill 2013 . We invite you to comment on the proposed two categories of amendments:
a) two legislative amendments that give effect to policies announced in Budget 2013 – your feedback will help us improve the draft legislation with regard to its clarity and efficient compliance by taxpayers; and
b) the policy and drafting of the proposed one legislative amendment relating to non-Budget change.
SCOPE OF THE CONSULTATION EXERCISE
2. The draft Property Tax (Amendment) Bill 2013 incorporates three proposed legislative amendments to the Property Tax Act, including:
(a) Budget 2013 changes - These are the tax changes announced by Deputy Prime Minister and Minister for Finance, Mr Tharman Shanmugaratnam, in the 2013 Budget Statement . The key Budget tax changes include:
i) Remove property tax refund for unoccupied residential and non-residential properties with effect from 1 January 2014. This will align the treatment with the policy intent of property tax, which is to tax property wealth rather than use, and ensure consistency in the tax treatment of all vacant properties; and
ii) Introduce the progressive Property Tax Rate for residential properties from 1 January 2014;
(b) Other tax change - Extend the deadlines for filing objections and appeals on property tax assessments from the current 21 days to 30 days.
3. The summary table provides a brief description of the tax changes and explains the amendments to the Property Tax Act. Please refer to the draft Property Tax (Amendment) Bill and its accompanying Explanatory Statement for details.
4. We would appreciate your support and participation to ensure that the consultation exercise is productive and focused. Respondents are requested to observe these guidelines:
a. Please identify yourself as well as the organisation you represent (if any) so that we may follow up with you to clarify your comments, if necessary.
b. Be clear and concise in your comments.
c. Focus your comments on how the legislative amendments can be better written to make them clearer and to make compliance easier, or on how the Non-Budget tax policy change can be improved.
d. Use the prescribed template provided to organise your feedback;
e. As far as possible, please explain your points with illustrations, examples, data or alternative formulations of the amendments.
5. This draft legislation is released only for the purpose of consultation and should therefore not be used for individual or business decisions as it does not represent the final legislation or regulations. All comments received during the consultation exercise will be reviewed thoroughly and, if accepted, will be incorporated in the Bill for introduction in Parliament.
PERIOD OF CONSULTATION
6. The draft Property Tax (Amendment) Bill 2013 is available for public consultation from 25 Jul 2013 to 14 Aug 2013. We regret that comments received after 14 Aug 2013 will not be considered as they will not be in time for incorporation into the final Bill.
7. We encourage all interested participants to submit your comments via our online submission form. The online submission form is the easiest and quickest way for your comments to reach us. You can also send us your comments, using the prescribed template , through:
a. email to firstname.lastname@example.org; or
b. fax to 6337 4134; or
c. post to:
Ministry of Finance
100 High Street, #10-01
Attention: Tax Policy Directorate
SUMMARY OF RESPONSE
8. We will publish a summary of the main comments we received on the Ministry of Finance’s website , together with our responses, by the end of September 2013. The identity of respondents will not be disclosed in the summary.
DOCUMENTS TO DOWNLOAD
9. For further reference, please click here to download the relevant documents for this public consultation exercise.