Countering corruption in tax authorities
The tax authorities are at high risk. They process information of interest to many taxpayers, their employees conduct inspections that threaten companies with significant fines and criminal prosecution. Anti-corruption in this area should be comprehensive and rely on a solid methodological base.
Legal and regulatory framework for combating corruption in tax authorities
The Federal Tax Service regularly adopts programs and plans to combat corruption, which determine the behavior of employees in all ambiguous moments. The Anti-Corruption Plan for 2018-2020, approved in August 2018, is currently in force. It is based on the provisions of the Law "On Combating Corruption" No. 273-FZ. The main method of combating corruption in the tax authorities is the monitoring of expenditures, but a number of other measures are envisaged to increase control over the activities of the heads and specialists of the Federal Tax Service.
Quite often, the manifestations of corruption are encouraged by the heads of the tax authorities. So, only in 2018 were the heads of the regional departments of the tax service for the Kurgan, Nizhny Novgorod and Tyumen regions brought to justice. To successfully combat the manifestation of this social evil, it is necessary not only to carry out measures to combat corruption, but also to monitor their effectiveness.
The efficiency of the tax system is a key factor in economic growth and the development of the social sphere; budget revenues depend on the level of tax collection. The plan for combating corruption in the tax authorities adopted for the current period includes a list of priority measures and persons responsible for their implementation.
Among the approved measures:
- control over the ethical behavior of employees;
- control over expenses of employees, their compliance with the level of wages;
- control over compliance with anti-corruption legislation;
- supervision over the receipt of gifts by employees of the Federal Tax Service;
- organization of inspections of official behavior of employees of the Federal Tax Service;
- ensuring the submission and verification of the declaration of income, analysis of the information provided;
- formation of a negative attitude towards corruption among tax authorities;
- professional development of employees who are entrusted with the task of combating corruption;
- identification of cases of conflict of interest;
- anti-corruption expertise of departmental regulations;
- assessment of corruption risks arising in the course of the FTS's activities;
- creation of a “helpline” to inform about manifestations of corruption;
- ensuring effective interaction with law enforcement agencies and civil society institutions;
- media monitoring;
- monitoring of anti-corruption activities of territorial bodies.
These activities are carried out in a continuous mode, in parallel, their effectiveness is monitored. Monitoring often reveals the inefficiency of the activities of territorial bodies in the field of combating corruption, errors and shortcomings in regulations that have to be changed or canceled. Many errors are revealed in the activities of commissions that assess corruption on the part of employees and make decisions on the application of disciplinary sanctions. When conducting inspections, a formal approach is manifested, a refusal to use modern methods of conducting control measures, a discrepancy between conclusions and initial data, and a lack of supporting documents.
Strengthening control over the activities of territorial bodies of the Federal Tax Service should ensure an increase in the effectiveness of anti-corruption measures.