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HMRC Is Shite
HMRC Is Shite
Dedicated to the taxpayers of Britain, and the employees of Her Majesty's Revenue and Customs (HMRC), who have to endure the monumental shambles that is HMRC.
Tuesday, 13 March 2012
War is Declared!
Now here's an interesting thing, last year's public drubbing of "Jack" Hartnett and HMRC's General Council Anthony Inglese (who was forced to take an oath) by the Public Accounts Committee (PAC) over HMRC's handling of the Vampire Squid and Vodafone has not gone down well with the civil service.
As I noted in December last year:
"When it comes to self loathing, no one and nothing does it better than politicians and the State; especially when they viciously turn on one of their own departments.
Therefore it should come as no surprise whatever to read the "public damnation" of HMRC by the Public Accounts Committee ."
Anyhoo, senior mandarins are less than gemused and have, according to Exaro, "declared war" on MPs over the constitutional implications of civil servants being treated in this manner.
Such is the anger felt by the mandarins that GOD himself (the recently retired Gus O'Donnell) wrote to Margaret Hodge (Chairman of PAC), at the end of last year before he was elevated to the Lords, to tell her that civil servants should not be accountable to Parliament and are only accountable to ministers.
In the letter to Hodge GOD accused PAC of using the hearings as a “theatrical exercise in public humiliation”, adding “praise certainly can be a more effective tool for change than blame.”
Hodge is making a speech this Thursday in which she is expected to reveal the contents of a dossier of anonymous, highly critical comments from civil servants and government lawyers who object to PAC's conduct.
At the very centre of the storm is the treatment of HMRC's Hartnett and Inglese.
Hodge is quoted:
"I would agree that Whitehall seems to have declared war on Parliament.”
Aside from Thursday's speech by Hodge, which will stir things up, PAC is adding further fuel to the fire with its ongoing examination of contracts that allow senior civil servants to avoid tax.
This "war" between mandarins and Parliament will of course do nothing to help HMRC improve its service or internal moral; as its failings/improvements will be used as a political football by both sides.
Tax does have to be taxing.
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