and Revenue Administration
Fuel Tax Act
Information Circular PRO-4R2
||September 30, 2003
||Alberta Treasury Board and Finance,
Tax and Revenue Administration
|For more information:
PRO-4R2 / September
ALBERTA FUEL TAX ACT INFORMATION
CIRCULAR - PROPANE RETAILERS:
NOTE: This information circular is intended to explain legislation and provide specific information. Every effort has been made to ensure the contents are accurate. However, if a discrepancy should occur in interpretation between this Information Circular and governing legislation, the legislation takes precedence.
This information circular discusses the
- Tax and Revenue Administration
("TRA") auditors are authorized under the Fuel Tax Act
to conduct inspections and audits of propane retailers' records to
determine whether the fuel tax has been properly collected and tax-out
sales have been properly recorded. A retailer selected for audit must
make his records available to the auditor for inspection.
- The provisions of the Fuel Tax Act
are enforced by the Royal Canadian Mounted Police, municipal police
forces, Alberta Gaming and Liquor Commission staff, and TRA staff.
Enforcement activities include random sampling of totalizer readings by
TRA auditors and, upon request by TRA, by propane distributors when
- A retailer who makes, assents to, or
conspires with another person to make false statements or false or
deceptive entries in records, or destroys or alters records, or wilfully
evades compliance with the Fuel Tax Act or Regulations, is guilty
of an offence and is liable, upon conviction, to a fine of up to 300
percent of any amount lost by TRA as a result of the offence.
- A retailer who fails to provide
information, or who fails to maintain records and books of account when
required to do so, is guilty of an offence and is liable, upon
conviction, to a fine of $50 for each day of default.
- A retailer who contravenes a provision of
the Act for which no other penalty is specified is guilty of an offence
and is liable, upon conviction, to a penalty of:
- for a first offence, a fine of up to
$1,000 and/or a jail term of up to one month;
- for a subsequent offence, a fine of up
to $5,000 and/or a jail term of up to six months.
- Interest is charged on any overdue amounts
owing to TRA. This includes excessive refunds that have been claimed by
a retailer. The interest rate used is the same as the debit interest
rate calculated for purposes of the Alberta Corporate Tax Act.
interest rates can be obtained by calling TRA or from our Internet
- If an amount owed to TRA results from
neglect, carelessness, wilful default, fraud or evasion, a penalty of 25
percent of the amount owing may be assessed.
- In the course of an in-office review or
field audit, small discrepancies may be identified. To avoid
time-consuming revisions, a specific tolerance has been adopted. No
disbursement will be made or collection action taken if the amount
involved is $20.00 or less. Propane retailers should not send refund
applications to TRA if the refund claimed is less than $100.00.
- The Tax Services Branch of TRA has the
responsibility of considering objections to any of the following
- an assessment or reassessment of fuel
tax, interest or penalties;
- the refusal to pay a refund of fuel tax;
- the refusal to register or cancellation
of a registration of a producer, distributor or retailer.
- A separate notice of objection must be
completed in the prescribed form for each action to which objection is
taken within 90 days of the day of mailing of the notice of the
action leading to the objection. Notices of objection may be personally
delivered or sent by certified mail, registered mail, fax, or courier
TAX SERVICES BRANCH
TAX AND REVENUE ADMINISTRATION
9811 109 STREET
EDMONTON AB T5K 2L5
Fax: (780) 427-0348
- An appeals officer will review the
objection and will either confirm, vary or reverse the assessment or
reassessment, or confirm or reverse the refusal or cancellation. The
objector will be advised of the decision.
- Notice of objection forms can be obtained
from our website,
or by calling 427-3044 (Edmonton calling area) or 310-0000/(780)427-3044
(Alberta toll free).
- Objectors who are dissatisfied with the
outcome of their objection may file an appeal with the Court of Queen's
Bench within 90 days of the date of mailing of the response to the
notice of objection. Also, any objectors who have not received a
response from Tax Services within 90 days of the filing of the notice of
objection, may file an appeal with the Court of Queen's Bench. In both
cases the appeal must be served on TRA and a copy must be filed with the
Clerk of the Court. The Court may confirm, vary or reverse the (re)assessment
leading to the appeal or confirm or reverse the refusal or cancellation
leading to the appeal. The Court may make an order relating to costs as
it deems appropriate. The decision of the Court may be appealed to the
Alberta Court of Appeal, and subsequently to the Supreme Court of