Covering Louisiana

Dec 2, 2013 5:46 PM by AP

Audit: State falls short in severance tax review

BATON ROUGE, La. (AP) - A new audit says Louisiana's revenue department hasn't been making sure that oil and gas companies pay everything they owe in severance taxes.

The tax revenue is one of state government's larger sources of financing for operations, and Legislative Auditor Daryl Purpera's office says the state could be possibly missing out on millions it is owed.

The audit says the state revenue department turned off an automated program that looked for companies that didn't file severance tax returns and does only a limited review to make sure self-reported data used to compute taxes owed are accurate.

Auditors reviewed severance tax payments from 2009 through 2012.

The Department of Revenue agreed with auditors' findings and said it is working on improved tax review software to ensure severance taxes are properly collected.

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