Tax Academy continues training despite pandemic

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    The Philippine Tax Academy (PTA) has continued to provide training to government employees despite the coronavirus pandemic by migrating the courses it offers online, the Department of Finance (DOF) said in a statement yesterday.

    “The employees trained from April to June through the PTA’s e-learning system. They include 28 from the Bureau of Internal Revenue (BIR), 152 from the Bureau of Customs (BOC) and 47 from the DOF,” Gil Beltran, DOF undersecretary, said in his report during a recent executive committee meeting of the agency.

    Another batch of 31 employees from the BOC underwent online PTA training as of the first week of September, he added.

    Beltran, who is the DOF’s chief economist and anti-red tape czar, said the PTA is also conducting its basic integrity education program covering 79 BIR employees and a separate refresher and integrity education course for 2,000 BOC workers assigned to the customs main office and the bureau’s various ports.

    By the end of their PTA training, around 600 new BIR employees will be inducted into the service before the end of 2020, Beltran said.

    Local government treasurers also continue to receive training online through the PTA’s e-learning system, he added.

    Meanwhile, the DOF said President Duterte has approved the appointment of Carlos Dominguez, DOF secretary, as ex-officio chairperson of the governing board of the PTA.

    The appointments of Caesar Dulay, BIR commissioner, and Rey Leonardo Guerrero, customs chief, as ex-officio vice-chairpersons of the PTA governing board were likewise approved by the President, the DOF said.

    Under Republic Act 10143, the PTA “shall serve as a learning institution for tax collectors and administrators of the government and selected applicants from the private sector.”

    This law provides that, “all existing officials and personnel of the BIR, the BOC and the Bureau of Local Government Finance shall be required to undergo the re-tooling and enhancement seminars and training programs to be conducted by the PTA.”

    It also requires all applicants to the said bureaus to pass the basic courses before they can be hired whether on contractual or permanent status.