The Tax Agency and the representatives of the workers SIAT (Independent Union of the Tax Agency), UGT, CC.OO., CSIF and CIG (Confederación Intersindical Galega) have just signed the extension for 2020 of the Intensification Plan for Actions (PEIA) . This is a productivity plus that since 2014 the Treasury offers its employees if they commit to doing twelve extra hours throughout the year and achieve certain collection objectives. The 2019 bonus represented a disbursement in payrolls that amounted to 95 million euros, according to the encryption of the Tax Technicians union (Gestha), which this year has not signed the agreement because it understands that there is opacity in the premiums, along with ELA .
In 2020 the amount will be lower, since the economic crisis caused by the coronavirus will make it “almost impossible”, as claimed by well-known sources, to achieve the collection objectives of the agreement. According to different sources consulted by ABC, the invoice for the Tax Agency will be around 50 million euros.
Several officials have expressed their discomfort, as they consider that “it is not the time”: “It is to throw stones at my roof, but, with the one that is falling, those 50 million euros would be better invested in respirators,” a newspaper tells this newspaper. Deputy Inspector of the Treasury. This official – from the A2 subgroup – received almost 4,000 euros last year thanks to the PEIA, more than 300 euros for each of the twelve extra hours he had to do. “An inspector can charge up to more than 5,000 euros,” he says. This occurred because the income targets for fighting fraud, VAT and personal income tax were also met.
There are more than a few employees of the Tax Agency who have commented among themselves on the “inopportunity” of signing this salary supplement this year, with tens of thousands of companies temporarily closed, self-employed drowned and unemployment soaring. In the face of this internal tension, and according to the sources consulted, in some delegation of the Tax Agency the bosses have asked for discretion: “Let us not talk about the subject, let it be known as little as possible.” It has even been done through WhatsApp, since most officials are working from home to follow sanitary instructions.
This is reflected in the agreement to which ABC has had access, signed between Thursday and last Friday at the headquarters of the Tax Agency. With telecommuting, it is very difficult to control schedules, but the document states that these safety precautions cannot interfere with the right of officials to take advantage of the bonus.
Many Treasury employees do not think the time is right. Other voices defend that the plan was already designed before the state of alarm, it has been renewed for six years and it is an incentive to ensure the correct attention and control established by the Tax Agency’s strategic plan. In addition, in times when the collection is plummeting, other sources point out that this is how the anti-fraud income is not going to go down. Since it was established in 2014, the revenue from combating the underground economy has reached maximums: last year the Treasury broke record revenues, with more than 15.7 billion.
The plan, which was coined under the Ministry of Finance of Cristóbal Montoro, is charged by employees of the Tax Agency in addition to the productivity supplement that officials have.
This bonus was defended as a way to prioritize the performance in the Administration, and consists of a fixed part and another variable. To collect the first, it is necessary to accept a minimum of dedication and to increase the hours worked per year by twelve. This entitles you to a monthly supplement ranging from 90 to 200 euros depending on the scale, and two payments on account of 67.5 to 150 euros each.
To this is added the variable part, linked to collection targets for the fight against fraud – they must exceed 10,400 million until November – and joint VAT and personal income tax – 151,586 million. If they are exceeded, the payments grow progressively. Despite the fact that the objectives were met last year, this year the Treasury sees a bump in the proceeds from the coronavirus crisis.
The plus occurs at a time when economists and advisers ask to extend the deadline to pay taxes and file VAT and income statements. The Spanish Association of Tax Advisers (Aedaf) has repeatedly criticized this kind of incentives associated with collection, since, it understands, they contradict “the principles of justice, generality, progressiveness, equitable distribution of the tax burden and non-confiscatory nature”.
“A system of” high collection bonus “is not only detrimental to taxpayers but also to the inspectors themselves,” alleges the body that highlights the high litigation of the Treasury and taxpayers. “Much of the so-called” fraud discovered “by the Tax Agency is subsequently corrected by the courts, but we fear that this correction does not generate a refund of your salary by the liquidating inspector,” reports the Aedaf. .