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HMRC appoints Whiting as non-exec

21st Jan 2013
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HMRC has appointed a raft of new non-executive board members, including Office of Tax Simplification tax director John Whiting. 

As part of its "ongoing governance arrangements", the Revenue also appointed former npower CEO Volker Beckers and HR leader Norman Pickavance to its board (pictured above, minus Whiting). 

Whiting will take up his board position from 1 April 2013 and will chair the department's audit and risk committee. 

The Revenue also announced two more additions to the audit and risk committee: former KPMG tax partner Leslie Ferrar and former FD of Ford UK Paul Smith.

The current lead non-executive is Ian Barlow, who worked for 37 years with KPMG in London as a senior partner and took on the HMRC role last September.

The CIOT confirmed Whiting will cease employment with the institute, but will remain an active member and retain his OTS position. 

While "sad" about leaving the CIOT, Whiting commented: "I'm very much looking forward to my new role, helping HMRC cope with its challenges and getting the voice of practitioners heard. I can't say much about what kind of work I'll be doing, as I simply don't know, but ask me again in four months and I'll have an answer," he said. 

"I'm sad about leaving CIOT but I will stay very much involved. Some people are asking me how I will wear two hats, but HMRC want to me to be there. As far as CIOT are concerned, HMRC is the seventh biggest employer of our members, so hopefully I'll be able to make some more connections there too," he added. 

CIOT president Patrick Stevens welcomed the announcement, saying HMRC made the right decision in bringing in more tax experience in at the top in its bid to improve its performance levels and tax compliance rates.

“I am delighted that the government are delivering this with the appointment of an experienced tax professional such as John Whiting to the department’s board. The institute’s loss will be HMRC’s gain," he said. 

“John’s expertise and understanding of the tax system is unsurpassed. Obviously, we will take care to ensure there is no danger of any conflict of interest in any of John’s continuing involvement with the Institute. We will also work to minimise any perception of a conflict of interest."

Whiting, Beckers and Pickavance will fill posts that became empty last year after previous board members left for various reasons. 

HMRC chief executive Lin Homer said she was "delighted" with the new appointments.

"They all have vast experience to share with HMRC which will help us as we face the challenges of the future," she said.


Replies (7)

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By Rose1962
20th Jan 2013 11:34

good news -

pity Mr Whiting isn't running the whole thing !

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Locutus of Borg
By Locutus
21st Jan 2013 09:05

Congratulations, John.

More tax simplification, please.

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Replying to lionofludesch:
By ThornyIssues
22nd Jan 2013 12:40

At odds with his OTS role

0103953 wrote:
Congratulations, John. More tax simplification, please.

I would suspect that he will be assimilated and that tax simplification is a thing of the past. We may get lucky if he is actually replaced within the OTS with someone willing to take tax simplification head on.


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By Trevor Scott
21st Jan 2013 12:08

Turkeys don't vote for Christmas....

....I am sure that these people, like the previous ones, will be prevented from applying significant changes. In a year's time I am sure that good management, accountability, integrity and success will still be alien concepts at HMRC.

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Chris M
By mr. mischief
21st Jan 2013 13:38

it's a massive ask

There is so much inertia, built in jobsworthiness and inefficiency that we can't expect too much of any of these people.  All we can ask is that they challenge these deeply ingrained attitudes and at least get something done for all the time they spend there.

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Locutus of Borg
By Locutus
23rd Jan 2013 00:27

I have to admit that I am somewhat underwhelmed by the tax simplification that has been achieved so far. Errmm ... has there really been any?!?

I suspect that Whiting would want to achieve more, but like Mr Mischief says he is surrounded by jobsworths within HMRC and probably also politicians that are fearful of real change.

I live in hope.

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By asking
23rd Jan 2013 11:19

leave it

if its simplified too much

1 - i wont have a job

2 - that bloke down the pub would prob always be right.

Thanks (2)