October 20, 2003 - Posted at 7:38 a.m. CDT
LITTLE ROCK, AR - State revenue officials are excercising legal remedies they once rarely used to collect delinquent sales tax payments from Arkansas businesses.
There was a more than 25 percent increase in the amount of sales taxes owed the state from 2002 to this year. So the state Department of Finance and Administration is taking more serious action.
Fifteen investigators are now assigned to visit delinquent businesses to make arrangements for payment of back taxes. Officials say that since the team formed ten months ago, it has contacted 10,000 businesses and collected nearly $9 million in back sales taxes. The state is also seeking court injunctions to stop businesses from operating until they pay up.