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Tax collectors

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Deacon
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Tax collectors

Post by Deacon on Sat Feb 18, 2012 8:08 am


In this turn of game 8's newspaper, Venice was proclaiming that adopting tax collectors would increase tax collections by 10%.

If so, that seems like a kind of no-brainer investment for many. Does anybody have experience doing it? Was it worth it? Did you get 10%? More? Less?

jamesbond007
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Re: Tax collectors

Post by jamesbond007 on Sat Feb 18, 2012 8:21 am

The downside to tax collectors is honour. I lost many points. You may gain in revenue,differing amounts depending which nation you play and their current position but you lose honour points. Your Nobles are not happy paying taxes. As it stands they collect and pay taxes,so taking it away from their hands only leads to anger and resentment from them.

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Re: Tax collectors

Post by J Flower on Sat Feb 18, 2012 2:42 pm

In game 2 Idropped the tax on Foregin merchants as the income was less than the cost of the admin, EH went up.With reference to the honour score and the nobles I guess you can exempt them from tax to protect your honour score. Afterall an increase on the Nobility will simply mean that the commoners will have to pay higher rents to them so it could well be that you lower income from them. which will lower EH. it is i think a question of balance between Honour and EH.
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Re: Tax collectors

Post by Deacon on Sat Feb 18, 2012 5:38 pm


I did the same think in game 3. My economy was so anemic that it seemed not worth the effort to collect it! Fortunately, that and some other actions have helped it recover.


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Re: Tax collectors

Post by J Flower on Sat Feb 18, 2012 5:45 pm

trouble is when you lower taxes to increase EH when for some reason trade colapses war copetition etc then you have no back up income.
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Re: Tax collectors

Post by Deacon on Sat Feb 18, 2012 6:24 pm


Well, in my case, I just zeroed out taxes on foreign trade. The trade was so negligible that I really wasn't losing anything at all. I figured that the zero tax rate would encourage foreigners to come trade, and improve my economy. So far it seems to be helping though hard to tell what its effect is among the other actions I did.

Anybody else have experience implementing tax collectors and their effects?

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Re: Tax collectors

Post by Guest on Mon Feb 20, 2012 12:47 am

Tax Administrators seemed to have a greater impact for France than Tax Collectors. In the rules Tax Collectors seem to be a replacement for tax farmers in some colonial areas. It makes sense that if tax farmers are getting a cut of revenue for themselves, then replacing them with your own tax collectors should at the very least ensure that cut accrues to the state instead. I agree with earlier comments that if either are introduced there seems to be an honour hit (some folks just don't seem to like paying taxes). I did see an overall benefit, though I wouldn't be confident enough to put a number on it. Perhaps over a number of years at peace with an economy enjoying a constant EH level it would be easier to judge?
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Re: Tax collectors

Post by Deacon on Mon Feb 20, 2012 4:43 am


What's the difference between Tax adminstrators and Tax Collectors?

I thought most have "tax farmers", but can implement tax collectors by training 1,000 men per million of population at an administration academy.

Tax farmers, commonly noble, pay the crown for the right to collect a particular tax. They make their profit on the spread between what they pay for the right, and what they collect.

Hence when you put in your own tax collectors, you take that spread from the nobles and give it to the crown. I guess most are saying that annoys the nobles, which seems reasonable.

I don't know if there is a difference between a tax administrator and a tax collector though?

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Re: Tax collectors

Post by J Flower on Mon Feb 20, 2012 10:58 am

All taxes are unpopular, they damage honour and ecomomic health, as there is less money to invest on trade. There is maybe another question that can be disscussed along side this one that is what is the most efficient way to collect taxes, as this will lead to either more income or allow you to lower taxes and keep the same income from inefficent collection.

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Re: Tax collectors

Post by Guest on Mon Feb 20, 2012 1:16 pm

Deacon wrote:
What's the difference between Tax administrators and Tax Collectors?

It was a long time ago when I did this in the game, so memory is a little rusty. However, I think administrators determine what tax is to be paid (cut down on loopholes), whereas collectors collect the tax due. If you make the tax code clear and simple (by administrators) then you should make it more difficult for people to dispute the tax payable, so take goes up. Of course, they may still do their best to avoid paying, but that is surely where collectors come in? Excise men are a form of tax collector rather than administrator, so there is a clear distinction. On my asset list it describes administrators as inspectors, and collectors as excise-men. I can't remember exactly what I ordered to set it up, but do remember it cost a lot of money and recruits to do it!

I suppose it also depends on where you start from. I think you are probably right historically for England in the early 1600s where nobles bought monopolies from the crown to get revenue for a wide range of basic goods and there were widespread abuses. In the 1620s (can't remember when), I think this practice was abolished by Parliament. It crept back before the Civil War, but after that I am fairly sure it was abolished in a much broader sense. Certainly by the end of the century trade monopolies were granted to commercial enterprises developing colonies (and they had the right to collect taxes for the crown - as happened in India), but not for England itself. Tax farming in the colonies was a feature of trading companies even into the 1900s (Mozambique/Nyasa Companies, in Portuguese colonies are an example).

France already had a centralised tax administration system (didn't use tax farmers, noble or otherwise), and began its reforms much earlier under Henry the Great (IV), continuing under Richelieu, Mazarin, etc. I don't know what happened elsewhere, so it is possible that less developed countries you are correct and nobles bought the right to collect taxes from the crown.


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Re: Tax collectors

Post by Deacon on Mon Feb 20, 2012 5:40 pm


I have read mostly about Portugal during the period, and it was definitely quite true there, and as you say, it was true as well in England.

Given nobility's historic distaste for soiling their hands with lowly trade, I would suppose that tax farming was one of they few legitimate ways they thought they had to improve their wealth, so would look dimly upon anyone closing that door for them.

My guess is that for the sake of sanity, Richard has normalized tax collection methodologies for most nations, giving everyone roughly equivalent ways to improve their tax collection methods. My read of what happened is Portugal was so ridiculously complex that any historical simulation game couldn't help but abstract it. Otherwise, the game would have to be called "The Glory of the Royal Accountants!"




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Re: Tax collectors

Post by J Flower on Tue Feb 21, 2012 7:46 am

It maybe an idea to set an administration academy to train both tax inspectors & collectors, It would also maybe an idea to pass laws exactly stating that tax avoidance is a capital offence. which may act as an incentive to pay. Harsh but I think in keeping with the tone of the period.
Or you can follow another model and let the military take over the enforcement of your taxation policy, a bit heavy handed. However this is what to a certain extent happened in Brandenburg-Preuen, it was copied to a lesser extent in other German states.

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Re: Tax collectors

Post by jamesbond007 on Tue Feb 21, 2012 9:26 am

An academy can only do one thing at a time. So you can only get a academy to train tax inspectors or tax collectors, unless you want to open up two academies at the same time. Each one different.

From experiance,tax collectors and inspectors take up huge numbers of recruits each and is very expensive as well.

From memory,as France it took a years worth of recruits for the above two.So i did one at a time.

Even now i question the worth of it all.

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Re: Tax collectors

Post by J Flower on Tue Feb 21, 2012 9:34 am

There is also the breakthrough at a business Academy of Book Keeping which will also help with tax collection & regulation. Is the introduction of a tax collection system and Inspection similar to setting up a Judicary or Medical service? that the number of collectors is dictated by population?

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Re: Tax collectors

Post by jamesbond007 on Tue Feb 21, 2012 9:54 am

yes, i believe it is.
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Re: Tax collectors

Post by Deacon on Tue Feb 21, 2012 10:58 pm


Yes, it is definitely 1,000 tax collectors per 1M population or part there of.

I didn't know you could research improvements in tax collecting at an administration academy, but it makes sense.

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Re: Tax collectors

Post by J Flower on Thu Feb 23, 2012 9:59 am

It is probably a good idea to introduce a standard weights & measures law as well, I would guess this could be done in a similar way as revaluing your currency as you would have to standerdise, across your territories. then again you need a good customs and excise control as well. the standard measures would ease the overseeing of income from taxes, coupled with book keeping it should help improve control and hopefully raise levels of tax income.
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Re: Tax collectors

Post by Kingmaker on Thu Feb 23, 2012 4:05 pm

jamesbond007 wrote:The downside to tax collectors is honour. I lost many points. You may gain in revenue,differing amounts depending which nation you play and their current position but you lose honour points. Your Nobles are not happy paying taxes. As it stands they collect and pay taxes,so taking it away from their hands only leads to anger and resentment from them.

correct.... they cannot hide the money from a tax collector who was usually paid by results


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