The Tax Administration Slush Fund

In early November 2017, the State Auditor issued Report 17-10, which reviewed special, revolving, and trust funds administered by the Department of Taxation.  One...

Are Car Rentals “Tourism Related Services”?

In the last few weeks I’ve been discussing the Foundation’s involvement in litigation involving online travel companies and the State’s attempts to wrest more...

No End to Litigation, Part 2

Two weeks ago, we wrote about a case now before the Hawaii Supreme Court in which the State audited and assessed the taxpayers, causing...

Department of Taxation Customer Service – Don’t’ Be a Victim

In an earlier article, I wrote about customer service at the Department of Taxation.  One alert reader wrote, with tongue firmly in cheek (I...

The ‘Not So Much’ Hollywood Sex Scandals

You cannot turn on a television or cable news show these days without hearing about another Hollywood celebrity claiming to have been sexually assaulted...

A Halloween Nightmare:  No End to Litigation

Halloween may be over, but we still have lots of scary stories! Once upon a time there were several companies that were audited by our...

TRUE FORENSIC SCIENCE: A 36 year old murder mystery solved

by Prof. Carlos A. Gutierrez, M.S. After the horrendous crime was committed in 1981, everything pointed to Bell as the main suspect. Bell, however, maintained...

Ocean-Friendly Restaurants – Do They Warrant a Property Tax Exemption?

Recently, the Honolulu City Council approved on first reading Bill 80 (2017), which would award a real property tax exemption to “ocean-friendly restaurants.” The term...

Incentives for Retirement Savings

During the past few months, the Tax Review Commission, a group provided for in our state constitution that is supposed to meet once every...

Fritz v. Department of Taxation, and Why You Should Care

Over the past several months, there has been a court fight brewing that could have changed how the Department of Taxation lobbies for legislation. That's...