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 WASHINGTON, Jan. 12 /PRNewswire/ -- In the spirit of re-inventing government, a consortium of state governments is maximizing technology to improve the convenience, speed and accuracy of tax filing for businesses.
 The TaxNet Governmental Communications Corp. (TGCC), a governmental non-profit organization of state revenue departments, has contracted with EDS to develop and manage a first-of-its-kind nationwide electronic tax-filing network for its members that will streamline tax filing for business by eliminating paper returns.
 The nationwide network, named TaxConnect, will enable taxpayers to file returns with tax authorities electronically and enable tax authorities to send electronic acknowledgments using computer-to- computer transmissions.
 Participating tax agencies and their business taxpayers will enjoy significant benefits.
 Good For Business
 TaxConnect will provide major efficiency gains for the U.S.' 6 million tax-paying businesses -- from Fortune 1,000 companies to "mom- and-pop" retailers -- by:
 -- Speeding processing. Some returns -- those with errors -- can take months before a taxpayer account is credited and brought up to date.
 U.S. taxpayers are estimated to pay $12 billion annually in interest and penalties. Quicker processing will reduce interest income lost by business.
 -- Utilizing a standard electronic format for tax filing.
 -- Providing a single, secure and confidential channel of filing tax information for multi-state filers which include most Fortune 1,000 firms.
 While large corporate taxpayers will be the network's immediate beneficiaries, it is designed to support every business taxpayer.
 Good For Government/Good Government
 For states, electronic tax filing will improve customer service and responsiveness by:
 -- Enabling states to respond more quickly to customer inquiries,
 -- Redeploying tax processing and data entry staff to more critical customer service functions, and
 -- Minimizing the mistakes tax agencies make when keying data from business returns. These errors cost tax personnel time and cause frustration to taxpayers and tax agencies alike.
 TaxConnect will also:
 -- Generate administrative savings and improve agency productivity by eliminating data entry and other paper handling functions. The state of Texas estimates processing of a sales tax return can take up to six hours. TaxConnect will cut Texas' receipt and handling time to 15 minutes.
 -- Provide a vehicle for electronic tax payment, speeding revenue to state coffers.
 -- Accept returns filed from almost any kind of computer -- from a small retailer's PC to a large corporate mainframe.
 In addition to developing and managing TaxConnect for TGCC, EDS will assist with subscriber set-up and installation and provide a user help desk. EDS also will offer additional products and services including electronic data interchange translation software, authentication and encryption services and data communication software.
 TGCC was created to serve the electronic communications needs of the Federation of Tax Administrators and the Multistate Tax Commission members -- the two major associations representing state revenue agencies. Through TGCC, state revenue departments have worked cooperatively to procure and promote electronic tax filing and payment services in a uniform manner.
 TaxConnect will be available to state subscribers beginning January 1994. South Carolina, which provided valuable assistance to TGCC in the creation of TaxConnect, and Nebraska are scheduled to be the first states to offer TaxConnect to their business taxpayers.
 Through its Herndon-based State and Local Government division, EDS has served state and local governments for 26 years, applying information technology to improve agency efficiency and service to constituents. EDS has operations in more than 30 countries, employs more than 70,000 people and is the leader in applying information technology to meet the needs of businesses and governments around the globe. Stock reflecting EDS' performance is traded on the New York Stock Exchange under the symbol GME.
 EDS reported revenues of $8.2 billion in 1992.
 -0- 1/12/94
 /NOTE TO EDITORS: A TaxConnect news conference featuring State of Texas Comptroller John Sharp was held Jan. 12, at 9:45 EST, at the National Press Club in Washington, D.C.
 Video excerpts will be broadcast between 1:30 and 2 p.m., EST on satellite coordinates: C-BAND, GALAXY 7 (C7), Tn?sponder 16, Downlink Frequency: 4020 Mhz, Audio: 6.2 & 6.8, Galaxy 7 is located at 91 West. For Technical questions call 202-783-6248.
 The South Carolina Department of Revenue spearheaded the effort to develop TaxConnect. Texas, California, Illinois, New York, Arkansas, Alabama, New Mexico, North Dakota, Kansas and Oklahoma were also involved in the development of TaxConnect and will be among the first states to offer this service to business taxpayers./
 /CONTACT: Jonathan Lyon of Federation of Tax Administrators, 202-624-5894; or Cathie Hargett of EDS, 512-343-4964/

CO: Electronic Data Systems Corporation; TaxNet Governmental
 Communications Corp. ST: District of Columbia, Texas IN: CPR SU: CON

SB -- DE011 -- 1348 01/12/94 10:34 EST
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Publication:PR Newswire
Date:Jan 12, 1994

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