Often the state is vilified by the law it creates, and such was the case recently when the State Board of Equalization was accused of violating the very Sales and Use Tax Regulations as well as Manual for procedures regarding policy of Investigations Division during a prosecution against a corporation who was allegedly involved in a case of evasion of sales tax.
The Los Angeles County is the site of this scenario where a large number of black businesses are growing in the recent years. Given that the city has a long history of discrimination against the African-Americans, most recent of them being in 2011, it is important to understand the politics behind this situation.
The root of the problem
The corporation, run by two African-Americans going by the name Nicola and Sharon Giannini, is probably the victim of a similar discrimination and the incident has unsettled every other black businessman in the region of Antelope Valley. As per the rules are concerned, the Board of Equalization or BOE is given the onus to look after such cases and determine the person liable. This liability is inclusive of the responsibility of filing tax returns on behalf of the corporation.
Hence, the issues of authority, actual knowledge and wilful failure come up in this case. However, in the end, once all the issues are resolved, a Notice of Determination has to be issued in the name of competent authority. It is here there is a major discrepancy since BOE has not released any notice whatsoever and yet, it has charged these two corporate leaders with alleged felony.
A case of discrimination?
The law further informs that such a charge of felony can only be applied when the corporate officer is liable as an individual for the unpaid sales. This BOE procedure can only be exempted when the secretary of the state intervenes personally, but that is hardly the case. Apparently, the court had decided upon the ownership of the company and the authorship of tax file during the period of 2009-12.
Furthermore, BOE has claimed that this corporate body huge unpaid tax amounts with an illegal surety bond of 50,000 dollars. Surely, the water becomes muddier when BOE claims that Sharon Giannini had even more fraudulent activities where several sales reports were submitted showing zero sales as well zero income.
The judge also stepped ahead of law since the case was beyond his realm and yet, by claiming that there was evidence enough to proceed to the hearing. Despite everything, the last breach of the law has been at the most severe point. They have determined an individual as the victim instead of the corporation. However, BOE refuses to agree to that since the person responsible for the affairs is at fault and hence, this person is to be punished by the law instead of some agency or institution. From the look of it, the matter will not be resolved without some more legal mudslinging, but surely things are not at all black and white.