Wed, Oct 05, 2005 - Page 2 News List

Hsieh says central government could alter Taipei income

BY JIMMY CHUANG  /  STAFF REPORTER , WITH CNA

Premier Frank Hsieh (謝長廷) yesterday said he would consider Democratic Progressive Party (DPP) Legislator Lin Shu-shan's (林樹山) suggestion to "mark down" Taipei City's share of tax income, following a court ruling that the city government is not required to pay fees to the Cabinet's Bureau of National Health Insurance amounting to NT$10.8 billion (US$337.5 million).

UPSIDE DOWN

Hsieh claimed the administrative court ruling will "turn the entire nation upside down," noting that many companies, such as the Chinese Petroleum Corp and the Formosa Plastics Corp pay their business taxes to the Taipei City Government because they are headquartered in the city, although their polluting factories are located elsewhere.

CHAOS

"This ruling will create chaos, I'm afraid," Hsieh said. "If that is the case, I think we will `rearrange' Taipei City's share of our tax income as reimbursement."

Hsieh was referring to the ruling by the Supreme Administrative Court on Monday, which ruled in favor of the Taipei City Government regarding National Health Insurance subsidies which the bureau claims are owed by the city government.

The Supreme Administrative Court ruled that the city government owes nothing, supporting the city government's argument that the subsidies should be charged on the basis of where the insured register their residence, not based on the addresses of the company that employs them.

Many Taiwanese firms are headquartered in Taipei, but their employees may not live in the capital city, and local governments are therefore obligated to pay for the medical bills of their residents.

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