PHUKET: The Chief of the Phuket Land Transportation Office (PLTO) has reported that his office is owed a staggering 141 million baht in overdue vehicle tax, more than half of it due from motorcycle owners. PLTO Chief Prasit Amrapal revealed the numbers at the regular Governor’s press conference at the Phuket Provincial Public Health Office yesterday, and urged those in arrears to pay up. K. Prasit also urged all vehicle owners to report accidents, thefts, police seizures and other events that remove vehicles from the road, pointing out that failure to do so would result in the annual tax continuing to be levied automatically. He cited the failure of Phuketians to inform the office of such incidents as a major contributor to the large amount of unpaid tax currently on the PLTO’s books. “Another reason that many people do not extend registrations may be because they are unaware that they can do this at any Land Transport Office, not only the one where the vehicle was originally registered,” he said. He issued a stern warning to tax evaders, saying, “If we find a vehicle on the road for which the tax has not been paid, the offender will have to pay up all back-taxes and will also be fined an additional 20% of that amount.” He encouraged people who owed taxes to pay up, saying that under a new government initiative, tax deadbeats who voluntarily contact the office within the next 180 days will not have to pay more than three years’ tax, however much they owe. Unpaid motorcycle taxes, at 77 million baht, account for more than half of the total 141 million baht in overdue taxers, with trucks (36 million baht); cars (20 million baht); and even sorng taew (local pickup buses) owing 5.7 million baht. In an effort to entice the public to come to the PLTO office, K. Prasit mentioned convenient new services offers by his staff, including local replacement of lost driving licenses issued in other provinces and easy transfer of licenses to Phuket.
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