Taxpayer-advocate program extended by Gov. Brown

Sen. Bob Hertzberg bill will help those who have been overcharged

October 6, 2015

SACRAMENTO – Concurring with lawmakers, Gov. Brown today signed into law a plan to make permanent a soon-to-expire program to help taxpayers who are overcharged by the state Franchise Tax Board.

“Filing taxes is challenging enough,” said Sen. Bob Hertzberg, D-Van Nuys, author of Senate Bill 540.  “It's even more frustrating for individuals who, through no fault of their own, fall victim to administrative errors and delays from the tax collection agency.  I’m grateful our governor agrees this action is needed to help ensure that California will work harder to correct problems that can cost taxpayers thousands of dollars.”

In addition to extending the Taxpayers’ Rights Advocate program permanently, SB 540 will:

  • Increase the maximum annual taxpayer relief amount that may be granted for a taxable year from $7,500 to $10,000 and indexes that amount to inflation.
  • Eliminate the requirement for a taxpayer to file an application for relief.

Created in 2009, the advocate program has provided relief to many taxpayers. For example, more than $4,000 in interest was forgiven to taxpayers because of erroneous actions while processing returns and unreasonable delays in issuing bills by the FTB.

Sponsored by the Franchise Tax Board, SB 540 was supported by the California Chamber of Commerce; the California Taxpayers Association; and the Howard Jarvis Taxpayers Association.

For more, including a Fact Sheet on SB 540, click HERE or visit Hertzberg’s Web site at the address below.

Bob Hertzberg, chair of the Senate Committee on Governance and Finance, represents nearly 1 million San Fernando Valley residents of Senate District 18, which includes part of Burbank and the following communities in Los Angeles: Arleta, Granada Hills, Hansen Dam, Lake View Terrace, Mission Hills, North Hills, North Hollywood, part of Northridge, Pacoima, Panorama City, Sherman Oaks, Studio City, part of Sun Valley, Sylmar, Toluca Lake, Valley Glen, Valley Village, Van Nuys, the City of San Fernando and Universal City. See a district map HERE or at  After serving in the Assembly from 1996-2002, including two years as Speaker, Hertzberg invested in solar, wind and electric-car projects; and worked for structural changes in government through the Think Long Committee of California. More HERE or at

Communications Director
Sen. Bob Hertzberg, Senate District 18
Capitol Building, Room 4038
Sacramento, Calif. 95814
(916) 651-4018 office; 916 834-1128 cell


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