BIR to tax election-related expenditures

By Carlito C. Dar, PIA, CAR


BAGUIO CITY, Jan 31 (PIA) – – With the campaign period for the May mid-term election about to start, the Bureau of Internal Revenue – Cordillera (BIR-CAR) is reminding political candidates and parties of the Bureau’s “Project Iboto Mo.”

In Project Iboto Mo, BIR-CAR regional director Eduardo Bajador, clarified in the “Hatol ng Bayan” Philippine Information Agency (PIA) kapihan that their involvement is in the collection of income taxes from campaign expenditures and payments made by both local and national candidates or political parties, for the purchase of goods and services.

“Project Iboto mo which we started in 2009, aims to maximize the collection of withholding tax and to minimize leakages in the payment of taxes,” Bajador said.

He clarified that Project Iboto Mo is not taxing the candidate but through the bureau’s withholding tax system, they will be collecting in advance the income taxes to be paid later by businesses that render service to political candidates or parties like tarpaulins or campaign ads for both broadcast and print media.

“Each candidate will serve as withholding agents as with their pre-generated tax identification number and TIN cards, it can be used for the deduction of the 5-percent withholding tax payment from the campaign materials that they will buy and from the campaign ads (broadcast or print) that they will pay to media outfits,” Bajador stated.

For contributions and donations to any political candidate or party, he explained that as far as the country’s election code is concerned it is not subject to donor’s tax, given that the contribution or donation is duly reported to the Commission on Election (Comelec).

Meantime, Comelec Regional Director Jose Nick Mendros also disclosed that as far as campaign finances is concerned, the commission already issued a resolution obliging all candidates and political parties to submit monthly report on expenditures, contribution and donations which the BIR can use as basis for their assessment of withholding taxes.

For media outfits/outlets, Mendros said that they are also required to submit a copy of any contract that they will sign with any candidate or political party within five days after the execution of the contract.

Campaign period for national candidates will start on February 12 while for local candidates, the campaign period will start on March 29.#