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Page last updated at 08:11 GMT, Saturday, 11 September 2010 09:11 UK

'PAYE is a 1940s' system'

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The chairman of the parliamentary taxation group has criticised a senior taxman for refusing to apologise for recent problems which have left six million people having unwittingly paid the wrong tax for the past two years.

Conservative MP Ian Liddell Grainger's comments came after Dave Hartnett, Permanent Secretary for tax at Her Majesty's Revenue and Customs (HMRC) told the BBC that he was "not sure I see a need to apologise" over the errors.

Mr Liddell Grainger told Today presenter Sarah Montague that "the arrogance on Mr Harnett is very worrying," adding that "PAYE is a 1940s system" which is in urgent need of reform.

Mr Harnett told Paul Lewis of Radio 4's Moneybox programme that media reports of blunders and IT failures at HMRC were wrong, adding "every country that I know of that has deduction of tax from wages and salaries has to do a reconciliation at the end of each year. And we are doing one".


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