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State taxes to go 'virtually paperless'

Comptroller Peter Franchot said Wednesday that he planned to make the process of filing income taxes in Maryland "virtually paperless" by 2014.

Franchot said at a meeting of the Board of Public Works, on which he sits, that 70 percent of Maryland taxpayers were expected to files returns electronically this year – double the rate of five years ago. He said electronic filing saved the state $2 per return and reduced paper waste by 26 million pages while reducing printing and postage costs.

The comptroller said his office was not sending out tax booklets this year to people who filed electronically last year. Nor has his office sent paper forms to libraries — instead sending CD-ROMs that can be used to print out copies of paper forms upon request. Next year, Franchot said, booklets will not be sent to those who filed on paper this year unless they specifically request them.

Caron Brace, a spokeswoman for the comptroller, said that "virtually paperless" meant that printed forms would be used only in unusual circumstances. Forms would be available upon request, she said.

Copyright © 2014, The Baltimore Sun
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